What Does It Mean to Trust Yourself?
I just posted about this over in my community, but I wanted to do a bigger post about it as well because I think it’s important to talk about it. How do we learn to trust ourselves and what does it even mean to trust ourselves?
Let’s start with what happened we stopped trusting ourselves because very often that goes back to childhood messages or trauma. We get taught that we don’t make good choices. We get taught that we are unreliable or not good enough. Through those messages, we stop trusting ourselves because nobody around us trusts us, so we don’t either. That’s where it starts. What we learn later in life is that those messages aren’t true. They are coming from wounded people that probably don’t trust themselves either.
Our job as adults is to overcome some of these old messages. That’s where the challenge is. How do we overcome this stuff? Recently, I’ve come to the conclusion that we need to stop going over the old ground. Every time something comes up it brings us to that same core wound, which in this case would be trusting ourselves, but it doesn’t mean that we need to keep healing the experience that caused the core wound over and over again. We need to look closer and figure out what aspect of that experience we should be working on.
More often than not, it’s got nothing to do with the experience itself. It’s more about the habit of response we’ve formed because of that experience. Does that make sense? The response we have to our current circumstances is habitual. It’s predicated on one or more previous experiences that have nothing to do with our current reality. It’s a habit. We can change the habit through awareness.
By learning to recognize the story the mind makes up and the thoughts that go with that story, we can change the habit of our response. We’re being shown the same old experience, we’re being shown the same core wound because the Universe is trying to get us to see the habit of our response, not because we need to keep digging into this wound that just never seems to go away. We’re picking up an aspect of it, not the entire thing.
Once we understand what aspect or breadcrumb we’re meant to be picking up and working with, we can avoid the rabbit hole of deep healing this process tends to lead to. I personally have stopped doing a lot of the deep healing because I’ve learned that I’m only being shown bits of things. That allows me to focus on the bits instead of the bigger picture. All this requires us to do is listen to our awareness or our intuition and ask what the thing is that we’re meant to pick up. It is our awareness that will help to guide the healing, not the mind which wants to give us a big insurmountable problem to keep us safe.
Learning to trust ourselves is partially about breaking a habit of response. Once we do that and we learn to focus on the bits and pieces we’re being shown instead of the whole problem, we can begin to do things differently. There is another part to this. We have to get the mind to stop looking for results in the outside world.
The outside world and what happens in it is not a good place to be verifying any aspect of ourselves. We can’t look “out there” for validation. We can’t use results in the outside world to learn to trust ourselves. Yes, we have to do, but it is only about the experience of doing, not what happens because of the doing. It’s all about the journey, it’s got nothing to do with the destination.
If we start learning a new language as a way to learn to trust ourselves, then we can’t base our trust in ourselves on being fluent in that new language. We can’t wait for fluency as a result, we’ll never get there. Why? Because we don’t trust ourselves to become fluent in the first place. We’ve sabotaged ourselves and we haven’t even started the first lesson yet.
We gain trust through the process of taking the lessons, not through the outcome of the lessons. The brain will focus you on the outcome because it knows that it will keep you stuck. Awareness is what allows you to redirect your focus into the first lesson, into a more present point in time. If you take the first lesson and you survive it that’s the first step to trusting yourself to handle what happens. Every lesson you take makes you more confident and helps you gain trust in yourself.
Whether you continue long enough to become fluent or not is irrelevant. It doesn’t matter. Remember, the trust doesn’t come through the outcome, only through the process of doing. If you only take 10 lessons that’s fine. It’s okay to move on and try something else. Keep putting yourself in new experiences and trying new things because that’s how you’re going to gain trust in yourself.
Trust, confidence, and courage all come through doing. Find ways to do things that put you outside of your comfort zone. Don’t wait for life to provide you with the proverbial “tower moment” to decide to learn to trust yourself. Do it now in other ways that are less life-altering. Enjoy the process instead of dreading it.
Those things are small steps and they are helpful to you if you use them in a way that doesn’t make you a victim again. To do that, you just need to be aware of what your mind wants to tell you. Remember, all the stuff the mind makes up is a lie!
You can learn to trust yourself. It takes time, patience, and healing, but it is possible.
Love to all.