If you find yourself thinking “I can’t trust anyone”, you are not alone. It’s not just you.
I will be the first to say that most people you meet are probably not worth your full trust.
Not because they are bad people, but because people are people.
(And I will explain in depth what that really means, shortly.)
The conversation about the trustworthiness of humans spans so many contexts.
From men and women having bad experiences with the opposite sex and deciding that the opposite sex is fundamentally untrustworthy…
To people realizing that they cannot trust their blood relatives, let alone their friends.
Of course, then you can consider whether your government, neighbour, funds manager or doctor is truly worth your trust.
And then you can consider your children, or even your pet dog.
So trust is a big topic, and one that we cannot consider without considering the topic of conflict.
When You Have Conflict With Someone, Does That Mean You Cannot Trust Them?
Some of us are far too quick to decide someone is untrustworthy based on a recent conflict we had with someone.
And in a way, that makes sense.
When you and another are different, you inherently trust them less.
Yet, the conflict itself could have been the exact turning point that made a relationship go deeper and become stronger.
As it became stronger, it would gradually solidify your trust in each other.
This can only happen if only you leaned into the conflict and saw it as an opportunity, rather than a reflection of the relationship’s low worth.
(Of course, this is not always the case. Lots of people are still quite simply, not worth your trust.)
That’s right, the vast majority of the people who enter your life are not worth your full trust.
Now: at this point in the article, you may feel concerned that it’s too “negative” if you assume people generally aren’t worth your trust.
Is it Negative To Think People Are Inherently Untrustworthy?
No, it’s not.
Although some people will think I’m being pessimistic.
This isn’t really about being negative or positive. That’s besides the point.
This is about understanding, appreciating and accepting the nature of humans.
It’s about appreciating how people are actually wired.
It’s also about what humans tend to err towards in their behaviour, habits, values and above all; instincts!
This is not even about science. We don’t need a published scientific journal to tell us the obvious.
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Some people cannot even trust their own mother…
We live in a world where many people unfortunately come to find that they cannot even trust their own mother.
And that’s very disappointing.
I’ll soon explain why, for some people, even their own moms sometimes can’t be trusted.
Everyone knows that you’ll encounter untrustworthy friends in your lifetime.
We’ve all been shafted by friends before.
You and I, we’ve hurt and betrayed friends before too, right?
But when it’s your mom or dad, a sister or a brother, or another close relative betraying you, it not only cuts deep…
It gives you a rude awakening.
It makes you wonder….
“If the one person I’m supposed to be able to trust just betrayed me, then who can I actually trust?”
Some people might say:
“Well actually, I’ve found that I can trust my friends more than I can trust my blood family. And my friends are more like family than my real family!”
Yeah, that’s likely because your blood family is not close.
Close families, securely attached families, families that are deeply invested in each other, are far less likely to ever betray you.
Take for example, the mother who calls up every friend and relative to tell them your personal and confidential secret…
That mother is a mother who most likely isn’t invested in you, isn’t feeling for you, and who doesn’t care enough about you.
Regardless, it’s all hurtful.
It makes you feel alone.
But…Here’s Why There IS Hope…
Here’s something more positive:
If you do the right things by people, then at some point in your life, there will be at least one person that you can trust fully.
I say this because the quality of your relationships and the quality of people in them depends on how you show up!
How do you do the right thing by people?
You lead with value, rather than leading with your need to extract attention, approval or love.
You offer your loyalty first, and then you get to see if they will reciprocate.
Read also: The Rareness Of Loyalty And How To Find It
If you’re serious about being a high value woman, I recommend you start with our popular program High Value Mindsets.
5 Reasons Why People Are Generally Not Worth Your Trust
Why are humans generally untrustworthy?
Here’s a few reasons why people are untrustworthy:
- People will almost always do what is best for themselves. Not what is best for you.
- More people feel like they are in competition with you than you realize. Competition automatically cancels out any reason to trust that person, as your own desired outcome and your success is in direct conflict with their success.
- We are silly enough to think we can trust certain people, when we never should have.
- Most people don’t share common goals with you. Goals that require you to work together with them.
- Most humans cannot pass the challenge of being your trusted friend if they feel like they ‘have’ less than you. If you ‘have’ more, or are winning the invisible race to success, most friends won’t be able to overcome their feeling of lack in order to put the friendship first.
So what is the invisible race to success?
It’s whatever it looks like to you.
However, in general, for women it looks like more money, more cute kids, status, great looks, intelligence, more love from a man, great lifestyle etc.
Here’s something to consider:
When we humans lived in tribes, we had more reason to work together.
This is because in tribes, we pool human resources together in order to survive and ward off enemies.
When you’re part of a tribe, you naturally share a common interest: the survival and functioning of the tribe.
Nowadays, everyone lives so separately. Families are segregated.
Not to mention that the concept of family has long been a political tool…
Ie: When a society’s population grows more reliant on the state (and less reliant on strong family ties), the state benefits.
If a population has weak family ties and emotional connections, that can ensure that the population is weaker, and the government stronger.
This is why we have seen a gradual move away from traditional family, towards surface relationships, non traditional relationships, and promiscuity over the last many decades.
Weak & Disloyal People Give Their Time To The Highest Bidder
Politics aside, there are plenty of reasons why we all find it hard to have loyal friends and lovers these days.
For example: even if you make a new friend, there’s every chance they’ll find a job overseas and move overseas.
Even if you have old friends, nothing is stopping them from simply being of poor character and disloyal.
By disloyal I mean, there are lots of people who will give their time and energy to the highest bidder.
They have no loyalty.
This is what weak and insecurely attached people can sometimes do!
They have no sense of honour or sacrifice for the sake of fostering a real connection with you.
Instead, they’ll hang out today with the person who offers them the most perceived short-term benefits.
And they forget about the real friendships that will matter tomorrow.
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Romantic relationships are stronger than friendships…
I know a lot of women don’t want to hear this. But for the ladies who have been in a great romantic relationship for the long-term, you would know what I mean.
By default, romantic relationships are stronger than friendships. This is because you share genes in your offspring.
Even if you don’t want or have children together, in the mammalian world, if you share romantic connection and attraction, you’re considered pair bonded.
And the purpose of that pair bond is to share and raise common children together.
To complete that task well, you have to invest in each other.
Not to mention, two people who are in love and pair bonded will always have a stronger bond than two people who are mere friends.
When you’re in love, you have a sense of self sacrifice. You want to give to the other person.
With friends, you’re not in love. You’re just friends.
You have commonalities, and you keep each other company.
With friendships, you don’t always have to be invested.
You can basically just have the most superficial connection. You can act like you’re friends for the sake of social goals, but have zero investment in each other.
I’ve spent a lot of time in the past investing in friends, because I thought I “should” have friends.
Over time, I’ve slowly surrendered to the truth of the matter: most friends aren’t really friends.
Most “friends” are actually acquaintances, and that’s the way they should be categorized.
Anyone I label a friend is someone whom I’d trust to be loyal.
But the percentage of friends who can truly be loyal?
I think you’re blessed if you have one or two people you trust to be loyal to you.
Also, here’s what loyal friend means:
It means that they value the friendship above all else. Including their own insecurities and fears.
That’s hard for most average folk to do, you know?
And I’m not here to complain about it.
In fact, I’ve come to appreciate and accept it as it is.
Even if I make great friends with a female, unless we have a common goal, and both put the friendship before our insecurities, the friendship won’t work out long-term.
Here’s what I’ve noticed with women:
I’ve noticed that the friend who feels the least abundant in important areas of their life, will be the one to maintain some distance and push their friend(s) away.
Most people prefer to only keep friends at the same level or below them, so that they feel good about themselves.
(I learned that from Tony Robbins).
With women, the question is that if they don’t feel abundant in their own romantic and family life, if they are always comparing what they have with what you have, are they really a friend?
Here’s an article on How To Deal With Jealous Women.
We have to accept that we are all separate organisms wanting the best for our own survival and future.
Sometimes, this goal gets in the way of loyal friendships.
I think for good reason though.
I don’t think the universe wants us to invest energy in pointless friendships that don’t withstand the test of conflict and/or competition.
This doesn’t mean there can be no trustworthy friends. Of course there can be.
I say, just don’t expect most friends to be trustworthy.
They are the exception after all, not the rule.
Let me share with you the 6 hidden signs that someone is untrustworthy.
Then we can talk a little bit about trust issues, and work out whether you may actually have trust issues.
6 Hidden Signs Someone Is Untrustworthy
Sign # 1: They have low self esteem and are deeply insecure.
I know I’m running a risk of people hating me with this one. But hear me out.
There are a lot of people in the world who are deeply insecure. The schooling system, and the jungle that school is also helps to breed that.
School is full of strangers lumped together; strangers who usually don’t give much of a damn about you. And we have to find ways to survive this environment.
For a lot of us, being surrounded by kids who don’t care about us leads to not only insecurity (from being bullied for example).
It also leads to the habit of seeking the approval of our peer group and teachers, just to survive.
The world is also filled with traumatised people as well as unfulfilled people who are living quiet lives of desperation.
They are wishing that they were living someone else’s life and wishing that they had someone else’s confidence.
I’m not here to make that wrong. I was once a deeply insecure young girl, and I know the kind of struggle that comes with that.
Here’s the truth:
People with low self esteem and who are deeply insecure cannot be trusted, because these people always need something more from the world.
They are always feeling like something is missing, or they are quite plainly not resourceful enough to change the quality of their mindset and their life.
Their energy reserves are used up on themselves, just trying to survive. How would they have any left over to give to you or to attune to you?
Also: often it is the insecure person with low self esteem who cheats on their partner.
Because they perhaps feel like they’re desperate for the validation and approval that they’ve been lacking their entire life.
Sign # 2: They try to make you feel bad.
It’s all the little comments along the way.
It’s them bringing up things from your past or present that they know (and you know that they know) you don’t feel good about.
This is a surefire sign that they are interested in stealing esteem from you.
Rather than investing in you and being emotionally generous with you, they are more interested in seeing you feel bad.
See, if you feel bad about yourself, you’re going to succeed less and be less of a threat to them.
The worse someone feels, the less resourceful and successful they can be.
At least that’s the way they think it works.
Sometimes, feeling bad can be the biggest gift to make someone work harder to be better.
Although, that’s not true for everyone.
And in a way, the “friend” who preys on your insecurities or who is often bringing up your failures, is taking a risk in using that strategy.
They’re risking you actually becoming better or more, for that suffering.
Sign # 3: They are always fishing for information.
Here’s the deal:
The loneliest people, the people who feel the least abundant in their own life, need to extract as much information about other people’s lives as they can, in order to fill up their own.
They will seem unhealthily interested in your life and what’s going on in it.
Conversely, they’ll seem strangely closed off, private and sadly, perhaps even shameful about their own.
Information is a ‘tool’ for these people to feel important and worthy.
They’ll often take information about you and spread it around to others as a way to try to bond with others and create new “allies”.
Is sharing information about your life with strangers or people who may or may not be mutual friends, a great bonding tool?
It’s one way to create a bond. But it’s an exceedingly weak way to bond. It’s just surface stuff.
Sign #4: There are inconsistencies in what they say and what they do.
Some people are very good at making verbal promises, but never seem to follow through with those promises.
The strange thing is that sometimes, the verbal promises are so enticing, so eloquent, and so nice to hear, that we forgive them for never following through.
It’s almost as if the verbal promises, if colourful enough and if presented in the right way, will be enough to fool us.
Specifically, those of us who are invested in the ideas and promises rather than the reality of how the other person is.
Sign # 5: Their innocence is all but eroded away.
We only have innocence once.
If we do enough things in our lives to erode that innocence, we lose trust in the world, and we stop investing in people and relationships in general.
Here’s the real kicker:
The modern western society encourages behaviour that erodes men’s and women’s innocence from a young age.
Date tonnes of people, they say.
Don’t settle down too young, they say.
Have plenty of sexual partners and don’t let anyone stifle your sexuality, they say.
Don’t have only one friend. The more friends you have, the better, they say.
Unfortunately, it is also exactly this type of behaviour, if repeated enough over the years, that makes humans lose everything that is left of their innocence.
When you go through enough people, just because people and society tell you that you should, you lose sensitivity to your gut feelings about who these people are, and what their true intentions are.
You lose connection to people’s soul.
Instead, you do things for the novelty of it.
Like having lots of casual sex, or getting to know “new” people for the sake of an idea about making lots of new social connections.
Most people are not trustworthy, and not worth your time.
If you approach the world like most people will care about your feelings and are worth your time, yes, you will lose faith, trust and innocence.
Most people won’t care that much.
It’s not because they cannot or because they are bad people.
It’s because people have enough issues of their own. People are busy trying to survive.
And because in order for them to care, they have to truly invest in you.
And tell me, when was the last friend you met who truly invested in you as a person, and in the friendship?
I believe that investment is one of the highest currency things in today’s world.
Because the world is not abundant with people who are truly wanting to invest.
This is why I always say: guard your innocence.
Stay attuned. Stay calibrated.
Most women cannot just have tonnes of relationships or friends for the sake of it, and still live an authentic life.
Most people (even some men) have casual sex for the sake of it.
Or go through and date a bunch of men for the sake of it…just to try to detach or pass the time.
We are humans with a soul.
Once we’ve sold our soul for bad ideas long enough, we can say bye to what’s left of our innocence.
And why can’t you trust people who have lost innocence?
Because these people tend to be cold. They’re not warm.
In some cases, for example young children who have already lost their innocence, they’re stand-offish and harbour a lot of fear.
Also, you cannot trust people who have lost their innocence, because they probably won’t trust you!
Perhaps also because they’ve sold their soul.
Because too much being burned by the wrong people means losing faith that the right people could be out there.
Sign #6: They Bombard You With Value Too Soon (Love Bomb You)
If someone seems extremely interested in you, and gives A LOT to you when you first meet them, something’s up.
It’s so easy to fall for this. Because you’re getting all this attention, approval and love.
But think about it: did you earn this new persons’ attention, approval and love?
If you didn’t, then it probably isn’t real. It’s one of the massive red flags in relationships.
They cannot sustain it.
There’s a term for this on dating, and it’s called love bombing.
But it doesn’t only happen in dating.
A form of love bombing can occur in friendships, business deals, relationships between athletes and coaches, etc.
Should You Deliberately Distance Yourself From people?
Knowing all this now, should you distance yourself from others?
I don’t believe you should be on guard all the time, or become a people hater.
I also don’t think it’s necessary to just distance yourself from people.
But I also don’t think it’s a good idea to assume that just because people seem nice and friendly, that they will be a trustworthy friend to you.
For all the reasons I already stated.
In fact, even if you don’t keep others at a distance, it is likely that many will keep you at a distance anyways.
Just remember that many people these days seem nice and act nice, but their presence in your life may not be of any real substantial benefit to you.
In fact, always ask yourself this question:
Is having this friend in my life costing me more than it would to NOT have them in my life?
Certainly, having lots of friends comes at a cost to your life.
The more ‘friends’ you try to keep, the less energy you have for the one, two, or three real friends in your life.
Do I have trust issues? Or are people just untrustworthy?
You may be wondering if you have trust issues, or if people in general are just untrustworthy.
Well, I think it’s silly to assume that most people will care about you enough to be a trustworthy friend.
This is because most people aren’t invested in you, simply put.
For someone to be trustworthy, they have to have emotionally invested something in you.
And they have to consistently be emotionally investing in you.
There’s a possibility that you do have trust issues and therefore, you don’t trust people, even when you should!
Good hearted, well intentioned and people who are clearly investing in you, DO deserve you to offer your trust.
So, for these types of people in your life, my advice would be to give them the benefit of the doubt.
In What Ways CAN You Trust Most People?
How should you trust generally well intentioned people?
- You should trust them to not deliberately try to hurt you.
- You should trust them to want to enjoy your company.
- You should trust them to do the best with the knowledge they have at the time.
How do you know if you have serious trust issues?
You know when you’re always assuming that in general, people actually want to hurt you.
That’s just going too far to the extreme of distrusting people, and it comes from a place of fear within you.
When you operate from this extreme, that means that you’re not calibrated and probably have a lot of grieving, processing, healing and adjusting to do.
If you find that you may be one of these people, I suggest you read Why Do I Push People Away? (And How To Stop).
I also suggest reading my article Do I Have Abandonment Issues?[The Definitive Guide]
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