"Reliability is the precondition for trust."
When we think about some of our go-to friends, colleagues and neighbors in times of need, they most likely share the quality of being dependable. Whether it's a project deadline or someone to walk and feed the dog, we want someone we can rely on to help us out of our jam. These are people we have spent enough time with and seen examples of their ability to follow through on their end. It's comforting having people to turn to when we are spread thin and the need is urgent.
I feel very blessed to have people I can depend on and turn to in my times of need. I don't feel it's a coincidence that these people are the ones who I have long standing relationships with, both personal and professional. I'm fortunate to have a big family I can turn to as well. I also think it's important to note that these people also know that I would be there for them in a heartbeat if they ever needed help from me. It's like this unspoken bond between us that we have each other's back, as long as we are available and capable of helping out with the request.
Photo by Tom Cleary on Unsplash
I take being reliable seriously because I don't want to let anyone down. I do not take their trust in me lightly. I feel it's an honor and duty for me to follow-through. I also think there can be imbalance when one party has requested many favors but is unwilling to help out in return. It's no fun to feel like we are being taken advantage of for our generosity and reliability. Sometimes we have to draw the line for our own wellbeing and self-care. I like to say, "Don't mistake my kindness for weakness." I'm happy to help out, but giving and receiving help should be a two-way street. I am not referring to anyone who is incapable of returning the favor. It can also feel necessary and rewarding to give and not expect anything in return but a simple thank you.
Being dependable and having dependable people we can count on should be a mutual agreement in a perfect world. We know this is not the case. Some people are simply unreliable when the moment calls for someone we can trust. For me, the key is to always remain dependable to everyone, even when it's someone I might not trust when I am in a bind. I'm ok with that. There are other ways in which their friendship or connections can be a plus. It also doesn't need to always feel transactional. I will still do my best to be dependable, and be careful selecting who I depend on. Even in times when we cannot seem to depend on ourselves, we can turn to those we depend on to help us out.
Calendar: How to Balance Helping Others With Getting Stuff Done
Zippia: The Most Important Dependability Skills (With Examples)