We recently got an email from a prospective customer that asked, “How can I trust you?” and I immediately thought, “What a silly question, of course you can trust us.” But, I thought this because I have information that she didn’t and the more I thought about the question, the more it didn’t seem silly at all.
Apart from the fact that if you assume I am devious and ask me if you can trust me. If you are correct in your assumption that I am devious and will lie to you then I will tell you to trust me. If you are wrong in your assumption and I am virtuous and telling the truth then I will tell you you can trust me.
Some of the best advice I got about trust was, “Trust your shoes”. It was from a guy I was rock climbing with who goes by the name MadDog and he could tell that I did not, in fact, trust my shoes. We were climbing out at Enchanted Rock where the rock is granite, featureless and steep. In some places there is no place to get even a toe hold so you try to get as much contact with the smooth granite as you can with the sole of your shoe and then weight that leg to stand up. The first few times you do it, it is nerve wracking because you are certain that it won’t hold and you are going to cheese grater down the granite until the rope stops you. But it does and when you learn to trust your shoe, you climb better. To this day I extend that metaphor out to other situations and when things are looking weird sometimes I still think to myself, “trust your shoes”.
Another thing that rattles around in my head about trust is from the movie Shakespeare in Love. One of the characters when pressed about how he knows something will work out, replies, “I don’t know, it’s a mystery”. It doesn’t mean that there won’t be obstacles and bad times but I do like to try to have the attitude that, in general, things work out, why?
Personal anecdotes about trust might not the best way to tease out whether to trust someone but below is an excerpt from the answer I sent her.
How do you know you can trust us? This seems more like an existential conversation to me, I mean, what is trust anyway?
Can you trust that we source our ingredients from the highest quality farms from all over the world? We do, but I suppose I might be lying.
Can you trust that we rigorously test our herbs for contamination, heavy metals, pesticides, and species? We do, but, again, I could be lying.
Can you trust that we have been in business for over 12 years, that we have 100s of 5 star reviews scattered all over the internet, that we have surprisingly good customer service, that we have been sold at various times and locations by Whole Foods, Sprouts, HEB, the Coop grocers association, pharmacies, and even in some doctors' offices? You could, but again, what is trust anyway?
As Hemingway said, "The best way to find out if you can trust someone is to trust them" and since we take our role as trustee very seriously, I suspect that if you do decide to trust us, you will not find that your trust has been misplaced.
Ultimately, it will always be your choice to trust something or someone. Trust takes forever to build and only a moment to destroy, we are oh so keenly aware of this. If you have trust issues with us, I would love to hear about it. I’m Dave one of the founders of Herbalogic and you can get me at firstname.lastname@example.org.