Sometimes after being hurt people will ask me, “How can I trust other people again? How can I trust life?” My answer is, “It’s not people or life that you need to learn to trust, it’s yourself.”
Life, as we know, has an unnerving habit of changing and throwing us curveballs – some of which whack us hard and hurt a lot. When someone asks, “How can I trust life?” what they generally mean is, “How can I relax, let go and feel safe if life won’t keep still, not change, do as I want and guarantee me only nice experiences?” Come to think of it, that’s what they mean about trusting other people too.
As usual, here I am, writing a snippet on a huge topic BUT sometimes the most complicated things can boil down to a simple message. If you trust yourself, you don’t have to worry about anything that may or may not happen in your life.
We each have areas in which we trust ourselves and others that we don’t. When you trust yourself in an area it means you don’t stress about it. You might think about it or plan for it, but it doesn’t get you in the gut with that gripping fear feeling – not even mildly. You can see other people really struggling with it and even while you acknowledge how difficult it is, it doesn’t frighten you. For example someone who trusts themselves to be able to handle illness doesn’t have regular or specific fears about getting ill. They may have illness or be aware they are at risk but it doesn’t frighten them deeply. Their attitude is, “I will deal with that if it ever happens. Until then I’m going to get on with my life and not give it much thought.” The same attitude is true for people who trust themselves to cope with an off day, a barking dog, a traffic fine, a natural disaster, an accident, a crime or relationship betrayals. It’s a relaxed kind of, “It would suck but I would cope with it. Let’s hope it doesn’t happen. Now let me enjoy my morning” attitude.
When you don’t trust yourself in an area, the very hint of it brings terror to your heart. “I could NEVER cope if that were to happen. I don’t even want to THINK about it!” is the war cry of this experience. We all have those too. What we do with them is up to us.
How does this tie into the idea of loving yourself and being true to your truth? Well, the reason so many of do not trust ourselves in certain areas is precisely because we don’t listen to ourselves in an unwaveringly honest way. Most of the time, we kind of half acknowledge and half disregard what we hear from our deepest self. That’s why so much of my work (with myself and others) is learning how to listen to ourselves and practice being who we are in the world.
If someone only half listens to what you say you need and ignores or overrides the parts that are not comfortable for them to honour, it’s not going to make you trust them easily, is it?
Well that’s you and you I’m talking about.
On the other hand, if you know that you will always have a listening ear and an earnest consideration of your needs, you will more easily open up to and trust that person.
That’s also you and you I’m talking about.
We often cannot trust ourselves because we don’t feel safe in the knowledge that our needs will be considerately heard and addressed by OURSELVES.
Next week I will continue with this and look at how this affects whether we trust life and other people and what we can do about it.
What do you think so far?