How I Made Self-Trust A Habit

[3-Minute Read +Audio] I don't have to think twice about trusting myself anymore; it's become second nature. I began with tuning into the feeling of certainty and revisiting the sensation frequently.

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We Have Certainty in Everything

When I finish a journal, I spend an hour or two flicking back through the pages and reliving the moments. It reminds me of those picture books where you hold the page corners and flick through them to animate a story.

In this case, the story told two years of my life.

The opening entry in the journal, dated 3rd April 2020, kicked off with these words.

“We have control of nothing, but we have certainty in everything if we are willing to look at it the right way.”

It took me a few minutes to recall the intention of the words.

A week before writing the entry, I had flown back to Australia from Indonesia (I share this story in True Creativity Demands You Fail). I arrived home in a country very different from the one I had departed. COVID-19 had sent our cities into lockdown and Sydney looked like an abandoned ghost town; the streets were empty of life. I jumped a train for the two-hour journey home and sat alone in a carriage usually packed with commuters.

PHOTO: My journal entry on 03 April 2020

When I wrote “control of nothing”, I referred to the external world. For the most part, we can’t control anything that happens in the world around us. Influence yes, control no. We can try to force the world to succumb to our will, but nature and life will always correct the power imbalance.

We can, of course, control how we respond to that external world. There are choices we can make, and that’s the point of the second part of the journal entry. We can choose to respond from a feeling of certainty.

When I say that, I’m not referring to the crystal ball type of certainty where I assume to know all the answers. That type of certainty is a deluded action, not a feeling.

To feel certain is to feel relaxed amid turmoil, calm in the face of change and believe in the integrity of my emotions. It is a pure experience of self-trust.

Listen to Audio Version – How I Made Self-Trust A Habit

As I reflected on the words, I realised how normal that feeling of certainty had become for me. I no longer consciously practice choosing to trust myself.

Self-Trust is a Skill

Amidst the turmoil of the early C-19 lockdowns, I realised I had a choice to make. I could continue yelling at the television, feeling angry and resentful. Or, I could feel certainty and happiness regardless of circumstance.

The entry on 3rd April 2020 progressed to a list of things I felt sure about at that time and still do.

  • My family
  • My confidantes
  • My resilience
  • Nature’s flow
  • Creativity
  • The power of conversation
  • Peaks have troughs
  • Rain will come
  • Smiles…[you get the idea]

Each time I read through the list, a wave of sensations moved through my body. I felt relaxed and soothed by the words as if they were a warm hug. I consciously grouped those sensations into a feeling, and I told myself, “That’s the feeling of certainty”.

PHOTO: I feel certain of my love for animals, including this boy Cambeigi

I repeated the activity in my head when out walking or doing work around the house.

Over time I only had to think about the word certainty and the soothing sensations flowed.

I then started using that feeling to my advantage.

If I faced a challenging decision, I evoked the feeling of certainty, and it no longer felt difficult.

If I had to choose from a list of options, I’d consider each item to see which one triggered the feeling of certainty. That would be the one I chose.

If I felt nervous about speaking in front of a crowd, I’d again evoke the feeling of certainty as a source of relaxation.

I liked the results achieved from the practice, so I did more of it.

Eventually, it became an ingrained, unconscious habit.

There’s science in my madness. I’ve trained my brain to release a set of neurotransmitters that calm my primal brain’s danger sensors. That enables me to access the full capability of my unconscious mind, my memory and wisdom. It also makes me more adaptable and flexible so I can move with the changing tide.

Journaling For Adults

If you’re looking to engrain new thinking habits, journaling is the perfect tool. As someone who has seen the benefits of this practice first hand, I’ve created a 30-day journaling collection called Route To Unstoppable Journaling Adventure, specifically for adults. Through daily prompts, you’ll explore what motivates you, where you want to go, and how to trust yourself to get there.

Days 18-21 of The Route to Unstoppable help you practice “tuning in” important sensations and feelings that you may otherwise overlook.

Day 18 – Ignite Your Intrinsic Motivation

Do you recall times in your life when you have worked intensely on something and time stood still? Hours passed by and it felt like minutes. When that happens you know you’re living from a place of intrinsic motivation.

Day 19 – Listen To Your Intuition

‘Intuition’ is the label we put on the group of signals our unconscious mind sends to help guide us in the right direction. One of those signals is ‘joy’ and it defines the pathway to our greatness.

Day 20 – Soul-Deep Important To You

These themes are your “true north”. Orientate your decision-making and behaviours around them. It will give you an endless supply of energy and fulfilment.

Day 21 – Create Joy In Your Everyday

You get to live your happiness now but you must a decision for that to happen. You must choose to express what is already deep inside you rather than longing to be someone else.

Discover more about your bold mind every Monday

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