Trust is the foundation of “mutual faithfulness” on which all social relationships depend (Lewis & Weigert, 1985). Thus the degree and quality of trust impacts relational stability. Three main components of trust are predictability, dependability and faith (Rempel et. al., 1985). In other words, if you can predict that someone is reliable, when the time comes, you will have faith in them, resulting in trust. But trust isn’t just a result of healthy relationships. Trust creates and strengthens them too. Studies show that when we trust someone, their commitment to us increases. (Wieselquist et al. 1999).


Is “recognising, understanding, and appreciating how other people feel. Empathy involves being able to articulate your understanding of another’s perspective and behaving in a way that respects others’ feelings” (MHS, 2011). Making the effort to understand someone, and really hear them, shows you care and are invested in who they are, not simply as an employee, but as a human being. This, in turn, fosters trust. 

Interpersonal Relationships

Refers to the “skill of developing and maintaining mutually satisfying relationships that are characterised by trust and compassion” (MHS, 2011). A fascinating element of trust is that it is mutual or reciprocal. If you don’t trust your team, it is highly unlikely they will trust you. Boundaries are an essential part of healthy interpersonal relationships. “Boundaries help us keep the good in and the bad out”  (Cloud & Townsend, 1992). They help to define the unique integrity of our lives, and equip us to know what we are, and are not, responsible for. The things that fall within our realm of responsibility (boundaries) are our own feelings, opinions, attitudes, beliefs, values, behaviours, choices, thoughts, desires, and loves. Learning and developing this skill is crucial to team unity and work. 

Emotional Self-Awareness

Includes “recognising and understanding your own emotions. This includes the ability to differentiate between subtleties in one’s own emotions while understanding the cause of these emotions, and the impact they have on your thoughts and actions and those of others” (MHS, 2011). Responding well to your own emotions and those of others creates a safe space for others to express themselves. Good emotional self-awareness will equip you to respond consistently to what others bring into the world, and consistency is key in building trust.