Trust in relationships

How can you maintain trust in relationships?

Trust is a vital aspect of almost every relationship. Trust brings peace and harmony. Distrust often signals the beginning of the end of a relationship. If you think that the other party is hiding something from you, or is not sharing what is important to him or her, you feel shut out. Our research shows that it makes no difference whether the distrust is justified or not: once it has crept into a relationship it is difficult to restore.

Is there anything you can do to build up trust once again? In our research we have found that self-control engenders trust. If you are able to control your impulses, you are often more able to make better decisions and keep your promises. In short: you are trustworthy. You are able to restrain yourself for a moment and not go for the easiest solution, but to make a well-considered decision that will produce the best long-term results for you, for your partner and for the relationship. And this not only prevents arguments, it gives a signal that you can be trusted.

Catrin Finkenauer, Professor of Youth Studies