How To Build Trust In A Relationship

Six Major Deposits that Build the Emotional Bank Account
(How to Build Trust in a Relationship)

  1. Work on understanding the other person.
    • What is important to the other person must be as important to you as the other person is to you.
    • True understanding of others requires that you listen for understanding not in order to respond.
  2. Attend to the little things.
    • Little kindnesses and courtesies as well as little discourtesies and unkindnesses are important.
    • In relationships, the little things are the big things.
  3. Keeping commitments
    • Keeping a commitment or a promise is a major deposit; breaking one is a major withdrawal.
    • Being unwilling to make any commitments is as much a withdrawal as making them and not keeping them.
  4. Clarifying expectations
    • The cause of almost all relationship difficulties is rooted in conflicting or ambiguous expectations around roles and goals.
    • You make deposits when you make expectations clear and explicit in the beginning.
  5. Showing personal integrity
    • Integrity includes but goes beyond honesty. Honesty is telling the truth — in other words, conforming our words to reality.
    • Integrity is conforming reality to our words — in other words, keeping promises and fulfilling expectations.
  6. Apologizing sincerely when you make a withdrawal
    • Sincere apologies make deposits.
    • Repeated apologies interpreted as insincere make withdrawals.

Excerpted from The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey