Daily Quote and Reflection: Emotional Connection and Trust

Daily Quote: “As many of us know trust begins and ends with emotional communication.  Though we may wish this was not so, no situation or person is absolved from this principle for effective two-way communication.” Coach Mark

Reflection: An emotional connection needs to start with listening and understanding. It is difficult to do with unstable and reactive people because you never know when you are going to trigger their anger. Remember in life there are just many situations you can’t control. Learn to be patient and know when to remove yourself.  

Action Challenge: Identify a difficult relationship and figure out how to neutralize and re-frame conversations. Share your stories so we all can learn.  

Daily Quotes and Reflection–Trust and Vulnerability


“Vulnerability is . . . part of being human.  It’s as simple and as complicated as that. If we can’t be in touch with (and openly share) both our vulnerability and our strength in a balanced way, our self-regard suffers—and we won’t see others or ourselves clearly.” Dr. Carl Rogers

Trust is …is being courageous enough to open fully to another and accept the vulnerability of this state of being…

Reflection: I think to be trusting you need to be comfortable about self-disclosure and realize in being open you are vulnerable to other people labeling you less than… In addition, you risk being labeled as something you are not.   Trusting requires you to have a clear and strong self-awareness.  Trusting removes defensiveness and enables you to connect in a more meaningful way we others.

Action Assignment: Complete the following sentence to get at how and why you trust others.

When dealing with others trust is___________________________________.

Then reflect on your  sentence and try to figure out whether you give trust freely to others or they have to earn trust.

Daily Quote and Reflection: Why Trust begins with Yourself and other observations

Quote:  Emerson once said: “Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly, and they will show themselves great”

Reflection: Emerson was talking about how to learn to trust, connect with others and build loyalty. His point of view is that trust doesn’t start with the other person, but begins by looking in the mirror and deciding what it takes for you to trust others. Do you give trust away automatically or do you make the person earn your trust? Do you expect great things from others or just wait for them to screw-up and then remove trust?  Essentially, Emerson is talking about how to connect emotionally with others. He is expressing his belief that in order to build an effective relationship we must start with trusting others. Trust needs to be demonstrated through your behavior not just by mouthing the words to others.  As I reflect on my own experiences in building an effective team I think trust is the cornerstone for creating a climate that accelerates cooperative working and building together the behaviors that support effective and efficient teamwork. 

If your team individually and collectively is supportive of others and respectful you can build on this positive climate to create the potential for team synergy (1+1 =3. In building synergy you tap the energy and commitment for the team  to reach way beyond what any one individual could accomplish by themselves. Effective and synergistic team members are shown to stretch way beyond what is expected by being engaged in both work and personal issues to achieve organization goals. Trust like this reduces defensiveness and unhealthy competition so that you team can produce spectacular and high levels of satisfaction for themselves and clients or peers they work with.  This respectful approach of giving trust away reduces individual insecurities and opens the door for maximizing possibilities. Your expectations and ability to trust will great enormous energy and self-belief in others and after growing in this positive environment, they’ll not only believe and trust you, they will prove to themselves that they can accomplish more than they thought they could. I think Emerson is coining the idea of the Self-Fulfilling Prophecy (SFP) before Robert Merton, social psychologist, identified and labeled the power of this concept to influence and motivate people to be the best they can be no matter the stress or situation they find themselves in.

When Trust is Broken…Lesson from the Anthony Weiner Debacle

‘ I’m not upset that you lied to me, I’m upset that from now on I can’t believe you.” Frederich Nietzsche

“The glue that holds all relationships together – including the relationship between; the leader and the led is trust, and trust is based on TELLING THE TRUTH AND INTEGRITY. MWH

The only person who now can correct this situation is Representative Weiner. He needs to make a difficult choice about whether to stay or resign his position in Congress. Based on the information revealed so far and the standards of Congress he now needs to do the right thing—resign. Let’s get beyond this distraction and start solving the rel problems ofAmerica—the need for quality jobs and a thriving economy. What do you think?As the American public contemplates another man acting badly (Congressman Weiner’s lewd behavior and cover-up) I reflected that at the core of this issue is broken trust. When we look at Weiner’s and many other men’s inappropriate and embarrassing personal behavior we see a lack of impulse control and in general an inability to monitor their testosterone urges. They have difficulty anticipating or measuring consequences for their action or think they are to powerful to be held accountable for their actions. Remember that trust is the glue that holds and keeps relationships together. Without trust you lose credibility and without credibility it is difficult to do your job for the people you are representing. Connecting with others becomes difficult, and collaboration to solve problems next to impossible. To be trustworthy means to be dependable or that you can be counted on to do what you said you will do (DWYSYWD).

Daily Quote and Reflection–Creating Trust and Respect

Quote–“When we are sincere and authentic we usually earn other people’s respect and trust. They begin to open up and now are more amenable to influenced and change.  Imposing our point of view only makes others defensive and resistant to change.”


Blind spots and Self-Awareness–“Holy Shit” or Aha Moment

“What you bring forth out of yourself from the inside will save you. What you do not bring forth out of yourself from the inside will destroy you.”-– Gospel of Thomas

For me St. Thomas captures the essence of coaching and counseling for difficult moments in speaking the truth. These moments of truth I am calling the “Aha moment or the Holy shit ” moments.  When these moments arrive I find asking yourself and answering this question helps you make a good decision on what to say. The self-talk question is to ask–What is the worst thing that could happen if I say so and so?

No matter the cost, resolution and action are required for improving and stretching your potential.  The human spirit seems incapable of leaving cognitive dissonance or painful memories unresolved.  Even if we are good at compartmentalization there is an emotional price to pay for denial or inattention.  These unresolved conflicts rattle around until they unconsciously appear at the most inappropriate times as a destructive alien popping out of your chest.

In a recent Leadership Development workshop I received feedback on my first impression with others.  Sorting through whether this observation had merit I decided it did.  The feedback– I was too transparent and open.  I came on to others with too much, too soon, too fast. What did this mean for my ability to lead people?  It wasn’t a matter of figuring out what I needed to do differently or what I needed to know to change this impression.  It was a question of figuring out who I wanted to be, which I call the essence of leadership.

It’s the context of the being aspect of leadership that enables insight into what I do or don’t do to influence or connect with others.  These moments of “aha” kick-start and illuminate the power of self-discovery.  These moments provide a beginning of a new story as a person and potential leader. This type of  in the moment experience and insight seem more meaningful than tying to learn a sterile and logical model or framework for leadership development.  In ordinary life, we face feedback and dissonance every day that is difficult to resolve.  For example, there’s not enough time for family obligations, we can’t sort through which issues or organizational or personal needs are a priority, we find it difficult to say no to requests, we don’t have the authority or the control or the knowledge or wisdom to solve problems.

On the other hand, when we talk to another person and feel truly listened too we feel the pain and dissonance dissipate through the mere sharing and honest acceptance of that issue or pain by another human being.  The experience of unconditional acceptance and love makes the journey from denial through confusion to insight by providing us with hope, courage and strength to face the heartaches of setbacks and disappointments in life.  When there is no such promise of resolution but only the deep pain and suffering of life’s mysteries it is difficult to build a constructive and trusting relationships.

What all this comes down to, are a few critical factors that make coaching and counseling effective. They are:

  1. The need to believe in the other person’s ability to change and grow.
  2. The viewpoint that when people are believed in they begin to believe in themselves.
  3. Trust others; they learn to trust you and then themselves.
  4. Human beings have a deep and unending need to be understood and connect with at least one other person.  Just one connection has a positive effect on creating a climate for self-awareness and personal growth.
  5. The ability to confront misperceptions, untruths, fears and blind spots provide the structure to help people think, feel and act more constructively in meeting their needs.
  6. Encourage accountability, participation and ownership for behavior and results.
  7. Encourage congruence in thinking and authentic action that leads to positive behavioral changes and concrete action. The old fake it till you make it adgage.

In the final analysis, if we earn other people’s respect and trust they will open up to being influenced by us and work on needed changes.  Imposing our point of view only makes others defensive and resistant to change.

The MMFI Gift -Interpersonal Communications Tools 4 Building Trust

“A man who doesn’t trust himself can never really trust anyone else. ” Jack Gibb

Learning to love and accept ourselves is basic to human development. So is using language in a positive way. Ultimately when we learn to truly love and accept ourselves, we’ll be able to live well and love each other and every thing we encounter.

Three interpersonal rules that build trust and provide selfless leadership to others: Here are a few of the  main ways to  make people feel important (MMFI)  and recognized others for their good work::

  • Catch people doing something right, and acknowledge their behavior, thus reinforcing the desired behavior.
  • Give the credit away to others in front of other people
  • Never say anything negative about others when they are not present.–Praise people in their absence. If you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all.

Praising and complimenting people in their absence is the most  powerful way to win people over. Start doing it actively and systematically from Today on, You’ll be stroked by the results.