THE LEADERS TRUST

the leaders trust, while the naive only hope
The naive hope, but they are willing to blame. They are willing to pronounce that someone else betrayed their hopes. According to them, someone else is probably even responsible for them ever having the hopes that were betrayed.

Yes, some people call hope trust, but none of that is what I mean by trust. Trust is a conscious, intentional act. Hope is typically something that we only notice we have been doing after we have already been hoping for a while- and perhaps we only notice by the time that a particular hope is already over, already dissolved, already “betrayed.” “Ah- that must have been only hoping, because now that the hope is gone, I am embarrassed, afraid, resentful, and so on.”

If I trust someone or something, then I accept responsibility for the results of my trusting. If I trust someone or something and the results are not what I trusted that they would be, I instantly shift my investment of attention and trust. I may proceed to pursue a claim against a group or individual who I conclude may have betrayed my trust. However, rather than use the term betrayed, I may use a phrase like “has failed to perform as I trusted they would by now.”

That phrasing is much less “personal” than “they betrayed me.” With trust, there is no resentment, even though there may be intense disappointment and thus initiative to creatively advance a particular outcome, with flexibility as to how that outcome is produced.

So, why is it that I would say that leaders trust? What is it about leaders that is related to trust? Leaders continue to lead even when their trust has not yet been fulfilled. If one investment of trust has failed to produce the favored results, leaders either invest their trust newly to produce that result otherwise or else they invest in some oterh result.

In contrast, the naive never lead, but merely hope to be led in a way that they might later judge to have been trustworthy. The naive hope that others will be accountible to them without the niave ones participating in the accountibility.

Trust is an act of partnering. Hope, if one stops at hope, is an act of abdication.

Hope is actually a naive reaction against fear, generally followed by rationalizations (“good reasons”). Trust is implicitly intuitive, yet also participatory. Relative to trust, hope is mere resignation. Relative to hope, trust is bold, risky, engaged and ALIVE.

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