“I was no chief and never had been, but because I had been more deeply wronged than others, this honor was conferred upon me, and I resolved to prove worthy of the trust.”
You do not need to have some prominent title to serve others. Just being who you are and what you stand for is really enough. One of the medicine men of the Apache tribe of the mid to late 1800’s Geronimo did just that in attempting to lead his people to safety as they were being pursued by the US from their tribal lands. Essentially they did not want to be restricted to their reserved lands and forced to live a certain way of life against their will. The amazing thing is he had never been elected chief but as he mentions in today’s quote, his people looked to him because his story, his struggle, related to theirs. He looked at this as a bond of trust between himself and them and decided to prove worthy of their trust on a daily basis.
Trust is the most powerful bond of any relationship. It is not something that just happens overnight. It is a process and like anything in life, it is a process that takes time. Recently Positive Psychology.com had an article of 12 ways we can all build and maintain trust by Carthage Buckley:
- Be true to your word: Honor your commitments. Don’t make promises you can’t keep.
- Communicate effectively: Be clear about commitments.
- Build trust gradually: Take small steps. Don’t expect too much too soon.
- Make decisions carefully: Think before committing. Be organized so you can honor commitments. Have courage to say no.
- Be consistent: Trust is built from consistency.
- Participate openly: In team settings, show your willingness. Listen actively. Give feedback respectfully.
- Be honest: Always tell the truth. Lies diminish trustworthiness.
- Help people: Authentic kindness builds trust.
- Show your feelings: Be open to your emotions. Showing that you care builds trust in you. Practice emotional intelligence.
- Avoid Self-Promotion: Recognizing others build trust and good relationships. Constant self-promotion degrades trust.
- Do what you believe is right: Sacrificing your values. Honesty is respected. “Yes” people aren’t trusted.
- Admit mistakes: Honesty encourages trust. Showing vulnerability builds trust.
This list serves a good reminder to us all of how we can establish trust as well as maintain it. I am sure that Geronimo embodied many of these qualities to lead his people and know that we all possess the same capabilities to do the same.
What does this quote mean to you and how can you apply today’s message towards developing your relationship skills?