Connecting to trust

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Updated: Nov 14, 2021

It's wonderful to experience a calm, secure sense of belonging. We'd all like to enjoy it more often. But, even if we try to filter it out, we’re surrounded by damaged trust. Damaged trust between any two people, or across a team or group, severely undermines what we accomplish, how we feel, and how we behave.

We all know what it's like to lose trust in a team member, friend, or perhaps a family member.

When this happens, the relationship is easily damaged—or even lost.

Damaged trust is frustrating. It disconnects us. The same thing happens with our organizations and institutions. When we lose trust in them, we're quick to look for alternatives. Damaged trust makes us feel vulnerable and keeps us on defense. It may even feel like CYA is part of getting dressed in the morning!

There are four things every human being needs

Trust is at the very core of our human nature, that immutable, driving force programmed into our DNA. Human nature also accounts for our need to belong, be understood, feel valued, and achieve trust. These primal needs create powerful expectations that never subside. When they're not met at some level—or worse, when we're unable to pursue them at all—it has a detrimental effect on our relationships, as well as our mental and physical wellbeing.

Human nature is the problem

Human nature connects us all, across continents, cultures, and even time. It's helpful and just plain smart to remember that human nature, is...

Enormously powerful—in one way or another, it’s responsible for your emotions, thoughts, feelings, behavior, and definitely your relationships.

Unforgivingly constant—and so inflexible that it will dish out real, and sometimes painful consequences if you aren’t paying enough attention.

Human nature has always remained more myth and mystery than fact. You're like most of us, if you're not sure what the difference is between feelings and emotions, or if you don’t know where they come from. That can keep you confused and off balance about…

  • Why people sometimes don’t act like you expect them to

  • How feelings—yours and theirs—can so easily get out of control

  • Why some people bully, intimidate, or engage in subtle political behavior

  • How to create dependable trust, or regain trust when it’s been lost

The upside here is, the more you know about human nature, the more you're able to grow a community of trust and belonging around you.

Human nature is the solution

Because human nature is so constant, it can be expressed as what we refer to as Natural Laws. Not just clever aphorisms or well-worn rules of thumb, but unflinching laws. They never, ever change. This works in your favor.

Once you seriously understand these laws, everything becomes more predictable. For instance, the sequence of how emotions, feelings, behaviors, and relationships unfold doesn’t change.

When an experience you’ve shared with one or more people doesn’t end well, you can use this sequence to diagnose the problem. Decide what has to change, and the next time, the outcome should be more to your liking.

In order to understand this better, you might compare the laws of human nature to the laws of physical nature. At some point, everyone learns about physical nature—at least enough to know that nothing ever goes up when you drop it!

So, let this sink in… Trust, in human nature is like Gravity, in physical nature. With each one, when you take a hard fall you know it’s going to hurt…you just don’t know how long it will take to heal. Sometimes, things don’t heal.

Things we can do to raise the level of trust in the world around us.

The best of everything happens within our relationships. And, the currency of relationships is feelings and emotions. So, it follows that we can all…

  • Take stock of our own human ecosystem. This is the context we share, with the opportunity to benefit from our connections to others.

  • Learn to be accountable for our share of how our connections experience trust and belonging, which includes the expectations for being valued and understood. You may have already discovered that the best chance any of us have for getting our own needs met is by helping others get theirs met.

The incredible power of Human Nature is yours.

Our job is helping you connect to it.

If you haven’t yet clicked on the small illustration above, we invite you to do that now. In the process, you’ll be invited to take our free, Damaged Trust Assessment. You’ll be able to immediately view an online report that’s shaped by your answers in the assessment. You’ll also receive The 5 Secrets Guide, with fresh new insights on building relationships based on trust and respect.

Your comments are always appreciated on our blog posts. And, I put a high value networking and sharing ideas, so please feel free to match your schedule with mine, by clicking on the calendar icon down in the footer.

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Updated: Nov 7, 2021

Learning in the flow of work may be a hot topic, but what if we tapped into our natural, creative flow first? Wouldn't that dramatically change how we learn?

Two people are in the flow, and making learning in the flow of work easy
Working from your personal flow is exhilarating—and certainly worth developing the habit.

Learning in the flow of work too narrowly defines a great topic. We're human beings—learning by solving problems is the reason we wake up every morning.

Important fact: the guidelines below share a common foundation in Human Nature. The human nature we all constantly experience. Part of that experience is applying an enormous amount of "gut wisdom" to our challenges. By improving on our natural gut feelings, we can significantly increase the speed, quality and ease of our performance. We commonly refer to this as being in the flow.

So, we can create an advantage by sharpening up our natural gifts of humanity.

One more thing. This is a new concept for most people (maybe not you) but the laws of human nature are just as immutable and predictable as the laws of physics. Think about it: approaching your challenges in-synch with others. That's huge!

Let's briefly discuss these 5 guidelines...
  1. Integrate humanity with simple solution design.

  2. Listen to what your DNA is telling you.

  3. Address the real root cause first.

  4. Design the behaviors of success into each solution.

  5. Repair human interactions that go wrong.

About solution design

Teams and individuals alike benefit from the deliberate, consistent structure of solution design. Simply put, a good design engine results in faster, better.

Out of expedience or ignorance, we too often run counter to the rules of humanity. Your design model should provide rules, guidelines, methods, and process that support our highest levels of thought, creativity, and collaboration.

You can relate solution design to design thinking, if you like. Most design models are shaped to different, specific needs, like: architecture, software, graphics, products, and systems. Examples of design methods include: linear, looping, iterative, agile, and more. To consistently achieve transformational results, solution design is a requirement.

About our DNA

To reference DNA is to reference Human Nature, and a primal part of our nature is to connect with others. Why? The intent is for all of us to accomplish more—and contribute more, too. So, it makes perfect sense that we would learn how to be our best by connecting with the people around us. Hey, they may be annoying sometimes, but they're supposed to be there—we're all supposed to be there, supporting each other! What an excellent definition of teamwork.

The level of accomplishment for any individual relationship—and across the collective relationships of any team or group—will always correspond to the level of trust people experience.
About the real root cause

All meaningful accomplishment comes from our relationships. Yet, politics and disrespectful behaviors, along with tactics like bullying, intimidation and exclusion permeate our various environments. We all know from experience what these things do to our collective communications, learning, and accomplishments. No matter how challenging or overwhelming it might be, the results we want demand that we successfully address relationship issues.

The level of accomplishment for any individual relationship—and the sum of relationships across any group or team—will always correspond to the level of trust people experience. In that light, our most significant challenge is damaged trust. It's like the silent killer of every promising solution and initiative

This is an inescapable fact of human nature, known as Natural Law. Just as with the laws of physics, when you ignore natural law you should expect to pay a price.

About behavior design

Team building, learning, and coaching. Change management, engagement, and talent retention. All of these call for a change in behavior to reach the desired outcome. So does every typical initiative, like: onboarding, customer service and satisfaction, and the efficient flow of work between departments.

Unfortunately, trying to change behavior causes such apprehension and emotional friction, success eludes us most of the time. And yet, one thing we know for sure is, building healthy trust supports our results in any endeavor. It would be smart of us then, to build behaviors that support healthy trust into any solution where we expect long-term success.

About human interactions

Most of us don't understand the difference between emotions and feelings, or how they interact. No one ever teaches this, so we just never learned.

Understanding and applying the role emotions and feelings play as natural law gives us a tremendous advantage. On the other hand, we've all paid the price of ignorance when it comes to the way feelings, emotions, and natural law. The price is confusion and fear, to the detriment of our relationships and shared experiences.

Luckily for us, natural law also provides the method to diagnose and recover from our interactions gone wrong. This diagnostic approach works across large groups like customers and organizations. It also works with our teams, and individual relationships. Natural laws aren't just sometimes true, they're true all the time.

If you're curious about natural law and how it can support you, let me know in the sidebar. You can also sign up for a discussion, using the calendar icon in the footer of any page. I put a high value on networking, so if you get on my calendar, I promise you a bonus!

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Updated: Nov 7, 2021

Your subconscious mind is kicking your butt, right under your nose.

This post is getting an update from our previous blog site. And, we thought the topic was interesting enough to give you a heads-up before it's done.

Howard here, doesn't have a clue why he's so frustrated. In fact, a lot of the time, he doesn't understand his emotions. Too bad. If he just knew more about his own human nature, he could be so wise!

We don't want you to think we're just teasing, so here's a major piece of information.

Your subconscious mind processes data at the rate of 400 billion bits/second, or roughly 1,000 times faster than your conscious mind.

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