“Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them, and try to follow where they lead”
– Louisa May Alcott, Novelist
Do you find it difficult to make decisions? Or overwhelmed by too many choices? If you answered yes to these questions then you may need to learn to trust yourself more. Self-trust is the magic ingredient to feeling happier and more centered in your life, and if we continue to question our self and continually look outside ourselves for the answers then the seeds of self-doubt can remain strong. So how do we learn to move away from these feelings of doubt? How do we really learn to trust ourselves? The answer lies in turning inward, look to your internal landscape for answers. Here are five important principles and techniques to learning to trust oneself. The more you know yourself the easier it is to trust yourself.
Believe In Yourself
Gary Zukav and Linda Francis point out in their book, The Mind of the Soul, that how you see yourself is a choice. Many of us are unaware of how many judgmental and critical thoughts about ourselves that we have. These thoughts shape our lives and the choices we make. Self-trust is based on positive beliefs in our abilities.
Believing in yourself involves knowing your abilities. Take ten minutes to write out your accomplishments. These do not have to be large successes. They can be as simple and what you typically coin as a hobby, such as baking, knitting, or blogging. From this list, dig deeper and list specific strengths into positive statements. For example, listening to your friend during a difficult time could become being “sensitive to the needs of others.”
In order to learn to trust yourself, you need to know yourself. Knowing your specific characteristics and traits helps to increase your intuition, especially when making decisions. Knowing yourself involves being able to accurately describe your personality. Are you introverted or extroverted? Are you a feeling person or a thinking person?
Take five minutes to describe yourself. From this description, create a list of your top ten traits and post it where you can see it daily. If you have difficulty describing yourself, get a close friend’s input. Remember to ask yourself whether their description resonates with you. Another fun option in learning about yourself is taking a personality quiz, such as Myers-Briggs.
Know Your Spiritual Traits
Each of us develop and are born with unique gifts. For example, some traits could include graciousness, steadfastness, devotion, humility, purity, integrity, idealism, and loyalty just to name a few. These traits are slightly different than personality traits because they have a transcendent quality to them.
Write each of the above words down. Then go word by word and see which words describe you. Another way to find your spiritual gifts is to think of a situation where you did something you are proud of. Ask yourself what gifts you used to create a rewarding situation.
Know What You Love
To develop self-trust, it is important to know what you are passionate about. Passions are activities you love to do. They are our dreams in life. If you know your passions you can trust yourself to make good choices in your life.
One way to find your passions is looking at what you do for fun. What are your hobbies? What are your extra-curricular activities? Go back to your childhood or young adulthood and remember what was exciting to you. Create a list of your passions.
Know What You Value
Values are the cornerstone to your choices. Values are the things that matter to you the most. Some people value traveling where others value stability. Being aware of and in touch with what really matters to you will help you figure out where you want to aim your thinking talents and spiritual goodness.
Ask yourself, Where do I take a stand? Come up with a succinct statement of your values. The following is an example: “I take a stand to create a world where each person learns to accept and be kind to themselves and where each person has tools to grow into their most authentic selves.” Values are a way of visioning your purpose in life.
Review what you’ve learned. Do you see commonalities between them? Create a master sheet with each ability, trait, spiritual gift, passion and value statement. When you are doubting a decision or when you feel poorly about yourself, look to this sheet to remind you of your strengths. It is the road map to trusting yourself.
Originally posted by Meegan Simpson-Cooke
Zukav, G. & Francis, L. (2003). The Mind of the Soul. Free Press: New York.