When you don’t trust yourself, you don’t listen to your own intuition and instead you start looking outside yourself for answers. The problem with that is the advice you get will be tailored to fit the person giving it to you and will also be colored by that person’s fears and limitations. And in that way, those fears and limits will suddenly become yours.
All the answers you need really are inside of you. You don’t have to doubt your ability to have those answers; I assure you they are there. It’s just a matter of taking the time to listen. Those answers will tell you what you need to do to best take care of yourself, what the next step you need to take is, in which direction you want to be headed, and all those things that you may tell yourself you just don’t know. Your intuition will reassure you of your ability to handle anything that comes at you (even if that’s one small step at a time) if you’ll just listen to it and believe what it says.
How To Trust Yourself Implicitly
1. Listen to your intuition and do what it says.
Your intuition is kind, nurturing, and supportive. It will never tear you down or berate you or harm you. It will never fuel your self-doubt, question your self-worth, or in any way make you feel less than. Ever. Instead, it will always strengthen you, encourage you, and help you grow. It’s often the quieter one in the cacophony of voices in your head, the calm one that’s trying to gently guide you in the right direction, even if that direction scares you.
Your intuition also includes your body, how it feels and/or reacts in any given situation. Your body is a great barometer of how you’re feeling because it doesn’t filter information through a lifetime of experiences or make lists of pros/cons like your mind does. Your body simply reacts. So trust it. For instance: if you start to feel like you’re shrinking back or if you’re physically curving your shoulders inward to make yourself smaller, that’s your intuition telling you that you feel powerless in that situation and that you need to get out of it. Your body will give you signs like that all the time if you’ll just pay attention to it.
The caveat is this: you need to do what your intuition says to do, and that may very well scare you. Quit that job. Get out of that relationship. Move across the country or the world. Take a class. Climb a mountain. Let people see the real you. Do something that matters to you and put it out in the world. If you want to trust yourself (which you do), you’re going to have to trust your intuition and DO what it’s telling you to do.
2. Keep your word to yourself.
This one is easy. Either you’re going to deliver on what you promise yourself or you’re not. You get to choose with every choice you make. If you’re the kind of person who makes promises and backs out, well, that’s something, I say kindly, that you’re going to need to work on.Think about it: if someone promised you something then flaked out, would you trust them? Maybe you’d give them a pass the first time (although there’d be a little sprig of doubt about them afterward). But what if they did that over and over? Would you ever trust them to do what they said they were going to do? No, you would not. You’ll never come to trust yourself if you give yourself your word then sporadically/rarely/never deliver.
The quickest and best way to earn your own trust is to keep your word to yourself. Every. Single. Time. Say you’re going to do something then do it. Say you believe something then stand your ground and defend it. Say you want something then go after it and fulfill yourself. Say you will handle whatever gets thrown at you (because you absolutely can) then rise to the challenge when it comes. Say you will listen to your own intuition instead of relying on others to guide you then do what your intuition says, even (and especially) if that thing scares you. Keep your word to yourself every single time, and the self-trust will come.
This is also about commitment. You need to make a commitment to yourself that you are important enough to yourself, that you matter enough to yourself, to keep any and all promises you make to yourself. It’s a commitment to see yourself as the valuable person that you are, who deserves to be treated with kindness and respect. It’s a commitment to become the person you most want to be (which might be scary but doesn’t have to be, I say gently, because that’s what you want anyway). So do yourself a kindness and build your self-trust by keeping your word.
What’s most important about finishing is that it’s for you and you alone. You started something because it mattered to you (and if it didn’t matter to you, well, you have permission to let go of it right now), and when you started, there was a commitment (either expressed or implied) that you would see it all the way through to the end.
You abandon yourself when you don’t finish what you start. Make no mistake: if what you started was important to you, something that you wanted for your life, then you’re not just giving up on whatever you started, you’re also giving up on yourself. And you’ll never build self-trust by abandoning yourself. Again, think about it: if someone abandoned you, would you trust them to stay in your life? What if they left and came back then left again, over and over? Well, if you don’t finish what you start, especially over and over (starting something new, then something else new, again and again, and rarely, if ever, finishing anything) you’re doing the same thing to yourself.
Being happy, in my experience, is about finding what makes you feel the most alive and then doing it. I would argue that much of the unhappiness in the world comes from people refusing to follow their bliss all the way to its end. There are a myriad of reasons why, but in my opinion the biggest one is fearing the outcome. What will people think? Will it earn me a living, garner me respect, fill whatever feels lacking in me? Will I have wasted my time? and on it goes. Pablo Picasso once said: The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away.” You can’t give away your gift if you’re afraid of the outcome and especially of how people will receive it. Your job is not to worry about what others think. Your job is to find your gift, nourish it and let it grow all the way to its end, then give it away. So surrender the outcome (you have little to no control over it anyway) and go be happy.
Some things I’ve learned:
- Self-betrayal (refusing to act upon your intuition, breaking promises to yourself, abandoning yourself by not finishing, and the like) is what shatters your self-trust. If you think being betrayed by someone else is painful and debilitating, it pales in comparison to betraying your own self.
- You got to where you are now by breaking your own trust repeatedly. It’s going to take a little time to repair that rift. Just like when someone who broke your trust has to earn it back, well, you have to earn your own trust back. And you will.
- If you listen to your intuition and do what it says, if you promise yourself and keep those promises, if you see whatever you started all the way through to the end, I assure you, the implicit self-trust will come.
So when will you start trusting yourself implicitly again?