Lessons in trust

“I don’t know if I trust myself” she said to me, as we discussed a new professional opportunity that had just presented itself. You see, less than a year ago, she was a total workaholic and this new project had the potential to trigger all of those old habits. These days, she’s very clear on the importance of balance in her life, time with friends and family, but the changes she’s made are very new, and as they say, old habits die hard.

We explored the opportunity a bit, and got clear on the fact that she really wanted to do the work…but the lingering voice of self-doubt was screaming at the top of its lungs. “What if I take this project and feel stuck again?” “What if I lose everything I’ve worked so hard to get back?” “I just don’t trust myself.”

Trusting yourself is an abstract concept and it’s almost impossible to describe. How do you know if you trust yourself? Not many people can articulate that feeling, so that’s not where we started. Instead, we looked at the relationships with people she trusted most. I like to call them the inner circle – the ones who have seen you at your best and at your messiest…AKA the people you’d call to bail you out!

What makes you trust the people in your inner circle? For me, it’s knowing that they love all of my parts. We’ve had disagreements, they’ve seen me when I feel like I’m losing my mind and on the best days of my life, and they keep showing up. For her, it was their support, validation and fully seeing her.

Where do you give yourself the same things your inner circle gives you? That question is a little harder to answer, and it’s one that I regularly come back to. My inner circle loves and accepts me completely. That’s why I trust them. Hers gives her consistent support, appropriate validation and makes her feel truly seen. This is where we start when we need to (re)build trust in ourselves. Look at what those you trust most give to you, and start giving it to yourself. <—CLICK to Tweet

By the end of our call, we’d come up with a plan. She committed to making the choices that support building trust in herself…including taking that new professional opportunity.

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