Trust is one of the most important aspects of a healthy marriage. With it the marriage can grow and change as prompted by the Lord without difficulty. The benefits will be enjoyed by both husband and wife. Without it the marriage will stagger and vacillate over every decision, even the leadings of the Lord, and the costs will be high to both.
Stephen Covey, author of The Speed Of Trust, wrote an article taken from his book about the importance of the Trust Factor in business titled, How The Best Leaders Build Trust. We believe it applies well to marriage:
Think about it this way: When trust is low, in a company or in a relationship, it places a hidden “tax” on every transaction: every communication, every interaction, every strategy, every decision is taxed, bringing speed down and sending costs up. My experience is that significant distrust doubles the cost of doing business and triples the time it takes to get things done.
By contrast, individuals and organizations that have earned and operate with high trust experience the opposite of a tax — a “dividend” that is like a performance multiplier, enabling them to succeed in their communications, interactions, and decisions, and to move with incredible speed.
Concerning a lack of trust–
Mr. Covey is absolutely right; When a husband and wife lack trust in their relationship every conversation is drawn out with lengthy explanations of the who, what, when, why and how, of it all. Every word spoken has an invisible question mark above it wondering if they really mean what they are saying, why are they saying it, etc. It is a losing conversation from the beginning.
Good communication requires trust as its foundation. Otherwise, the words spoken may or may not be true. This is taxing to say the least as it takes withdrawals from the good of the marriage. Left unaddressed a marriage without trust is doomed to fail.
Concerning a foundation of trust–
When decisions needs to be made in a marriage where trust is the foundation, they are discussed and usually decided upon quite quickly. They are free to go about their day without the weight of an unresolved decision. And they are unencumbered when the next decision has to be made.
Mr. Covey provides a checklist that will be helpful in determining what areas, if any, in regard to trust on which you need to work. Here they are:
13 Behaviors of High-Trust Leaders Worldwide (and successful marriages)
1. Talk Straight
2. Demonstrate Respect
3. Create Transparency
4. Right Wrongs
5. Show Loyalty
6. Deliver Results
7. Get Better
8. Confront Reality
9. Clarify Expectation
10. Practice Accountability
11. Listen First
12. Keep Commitments
13. Extend Trust
He ends his article with some excellent advice:
The best leaders recognize that trust impacts us 24/7, 365 days a year. It undergirds and affects the quality of every relationship, every communication, every work project, every business venture, every effort in which we are engaged. It changes the quality of every present moment and alters the trajectory and outcome of every future moment of our lives — both personally and professionally. I am convinced that in every situation, nothing is as fast as the speed of trust.
How is the Trust Factor in your marriage? What area/areas do you find lacking? Are you paying unnecessary taxes or reaping dividends?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Stephen M. R. Covey is the author of The Speed of Trust: The One Thing That Changes Everything