I am filled with joy at the start of the New Year, as I witness the lives of children who have been raised in insufferable poverty, now blossoming and flourishing in amazing ways, and demonstrating astonishing success.
As I reflect on how my team and I have arrived at relationships with them that are based on so much love and trust, I have been thinking about the word ‘Trust’. The Cambridge English Dictionary says ‘to trust’ means ‘ to believe that someone is good and honest, safe and reliable, and will never harm you.’
Trust has been fostered beautifully as the children have understood that there is enough room for them to deposit all their worries and their hurts. They know that love and loyalty are given freely and consistently, under all conditions, and without reservation, the only desire being to strive for their well being.
Affirmation is one of the most important ways of fostering trust in others. This requires recognising their gifts and appreciating them in a safe and loving environment. There is no room for judgemental or guilt inducing, condemning, critical words that lead to feelings of rejection. When I validate a child, I am saying, I hear you. I see you. I think of you. I acknowledge your accomplishments. I appreciate your efforts. Generous validation fosters tremendous trust and security, and has a profound effect on the lives of children, bringing about a vibrant expression of latent potential within them.
Offering leadership on the vision and values of Asha by example, and communicating them effectively all through the ranks, is a wonderful way of building trust.
As a result of the fostering of trust, the children are so open and enthusiastic. They are discovering who they are, and growing up to be responsible and caring. They are learning what it feels like to be understood by another person, and therefore learning respect and empathy for others.
Scientists have labelled the hormone Oxytocin as the Trust Hormone. Higher levels of Oxytocin are released in response to kindness, warmth, connection, communication, hugs, eye contact, laughter; and the more Oxytocin, the deeper the levels of trust.
Let us all embrace and foster trust in all our relationships, and remember that the way we experience life’s events can change forever.