Learn to trust yourself | Sunday Observer

Learn to trust yourself

As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live.”

- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

Everyone in your life has the potential of betraying you. This is what I have learnt during my five-decade adult experience. They may leave you. They may make rude comments about you. They may cheat you. They may lie to you. They may disappoint you in many different ways. We can’t count on anybody 100 percent. It doesn’t mean we should isolate ourselves or harden our hearts. But, it does stress the importance of being able to trust the one person we know we can count on: ourselves.

The person you need to trust first is yourself. No one can be as consistently supportive of you as you can learn to be. Being kind to yourself increases self-confidence and lessens your need for approval. Loving and caring for yourself not only increases self-trust, it also deepens your connection with others. Self-trust means you can take care of your needs and safety. It means you trust yourself to survive situations. You practice forgiveness, not perfection. But, above all, you refuse to give up on yourself.

Inner resource

Do you know that every single one of us is born with an extraordinary inner resource?This resource is self-trust. Think about it: every baby knows when it is hungry and tired. Every toddler knows what it likes to eat and with whom it wants to socialize.

As children, we grew up knowing ourselves - our rhythms, tastes and preferences. But, unfortunately, our caregivers - elders, parents, teachers - told us they knew better than us. We believed them and our intrinsic self-trust became buried.

Eventually, when we became adults, we became conditioned to seek the approval and guidance of others instead of trusting our own. As a result, many of us suffer from the symptoms of self-doubt: crippling indecision, constant desire for approval, perfectionism, and the fear of failure.


Now, the question crops up. Is it possible to learn how to trust yourself when you have renounced your self-trust for a very long time? Definitely yes, without a doubt! Since self-trust is your birth right it was yours from the start and still lives inside of you, sitting rusted and completely inactive, but not damaged. As with all areas of revival, the path of healing requires time, patience, and commitment. Resurgence doesn’t happen in thirty days or in three simple steps, but, following a few simple guidelines will help to redirect your attention from the external to the internal, thereby beginning the process of restoring self-trust.

But, remember - self-trust is like having an internal GPS system: you know where to go next, you trust your decisions, and are willing to take risks.


You won’t fear failure or making mistakes because your sense of self isn’t externally derived and you are confident about your GPS system.

What turns your desire to trust yourself into an everyday reality? Work on the following steps.

Take responsibility. Whatever the consequences of your past decisions, good or bad, own them. And forgive yourself, if needed. Maybe, you need to make amends to someone you have disappointed.

“I’m sorry I treated you badly when we had that misunderstanding. You did not deserve that.” Just as important is to make amends to yourself: “I don’t deserve to be put down by myself for the stumble that led me into that bad situation.” Then forgive yourself.

Live in alignment with your core values. Your integrity is the thing that makes you worthy of trust. Stay true to it.

Practice unconditional love to yourself. The understanding, compassion, and kindness that come from unconditional love is what you deserve from yourself at all times. You love your child even if she fails to make good grades. You’re human, after all.

Develop and keep personal boundaries. If you find you need to rationalize your choice to let someone into your life or take a decision, look closely at what you are doing.

Pay attention to your inner wisdom. Whatever you want to call it: your intuition, your vision, inner wisdom - you have a sense of “knowing” that is felt rather than thought. Do not dismiss it.

Look at yourself from a different perspective. For example: how would your best friend treat you right now? If she or he would be nicer to you than you are to yourself, that’s a clue that you need to readjust your default mode to “love yourself.”

Practice self-honesty. Self-trust demands self-honesty as much as it does self-love. Don’t kid yourself. Don’t negotiate terms with yourself.

Don’t fudge the truth with yourself. If you can’t count on yourself to tell you the truth, that’s a problem.

Eliminate toxic relationships. Seems obvious, but it’s hard to practice sometimes.

No one has the right to put you down, take advantage of you, manipulate you, or question your worth. You don’t have that right either.

Keep your promises to yourself. Did you promise yourself that after working twelve hours a day, seven days a week, you’d take two days off? Don’t break that promise or you’ll be bitter and fall into victim mode. You won’t be able to trust yourself next time you make a promise like that.

Reward yourself. If you quit smoking, landed a new job, turned your negative thinking into affirmative self-loving thoughts - whatever the accomplishment, praise yourself for it and accept the reward you offer.


Do you know what that means? Reward yourself just for being you. No terms and conditions are necessary.

When we trust ourselves, we can trust our decisions also. But allow yourself the freedom to make mistakes.

We learn nothing in life if we never take risks, never trip and fall, never stray off the path and get back up. But don’t beat yourself up for those mistakes.

Instead, thank yourself for the lessons they taught you. Approach every moment with the gratitude it deserves for helping you along the path we call“life”.