If you’re anything like me, you’re a little bit of a skeptic. Being a skeptic isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It just means that you require a little more convincing than most. In other words, what you believe is usually not based on your beliefs. To change your mind or sway your soul requires unbiased evidence. “Show me the data.” How many times have you said that? That skepticism makes you a little more logical, makes you question everything and makes it a little more difficult to trust.
For any true skeptic, trust is a four letter word. Trust implies a belief in something or someone without any evidence. In the medical field, providers have a saying. “Trust no one”. In the realm of critical thinking, trust is amateurish and laughable. It is reserved for children and fools. Trust is a skeptic’s worst nightmare, because it lacks supporting evidence or data.
If you want to make someone cringe, ask them if they trust the government. Even if you have a core group of infallible and trustworthy friends, would you say that you trust them? Whether you are a skeptic or not, trusting anyone is a difficult thing to do. If we are honest with ourselves, most of the time we would echo our friends in the medical field and “trust no one”. Or would we?
Even for the skeptics, the data and evidence about our ability to trust is far from what we would assume. We actually are more trusting that we could ever imagine. It isn’t just family and friends. We trust blindly and broadly, without the bat of an eye. Don’t believe me. Of course not!
According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics for 2009, there are 254,212,610 registered passenger vehicles in the United States. What in the world do cars and trucks have to do with trust? Each day that you get into your car and drive to work, you are essentially trusting 250 million people with your life. You are trusting each of them to stop at each stop light, to stay on their side of the road and not run into you when you are parked at a stop sign.
It doesn’t stop there. You trust the teacher of your child. You trust the pilot to fly you to Hawaii. You trust the UPS driver to leave that package at your front door. Skeptic or not, your life is rife with trust. Yes, there are rules. Rules and laws that protect drivers, children and air travelers. But for rules to work, we have to trust that people abide by them.
If we really look closely at all of those we inadvertently and unknowingly trust, we would change our outlook on trust. No matter how independent you think you are, you cannot exist in this world without trusting someone. This doesn’t mean you should trust recklessly and blindly, but it does highlight how dependent we all are on each other.