Learning to Trust Yourself

Do you trust your intuition in your decision-making? Do you feel like you can separate your heart-centered intentions from self-sabotaging behavior: the former based on deep self-knowledge and the latter based on fears and old patterns? I have had several conversations recently with people trying to discern this difference and make healthier choices in their relationships.

We all experience different versions of living from fear and our conditioned responses. Maybe a piece of the puzzle is not wanting to take full responsibility for decisions, because if things go wrong, you have someone else to blame. Or perhaps the complexity of emotions feel too nuanced and confusing compared to black & white business decisions, and it's easier to pretend they don't exist. Another possibility is that your inner gremlin of self-doubt is running the show and insisting that you can't be trusted with decisions.

The key is learning to quiet the mind and the automatic patterns, feel an opening in compassion, and just sit with the question in hand. It is a slow process of learning to trust your inner knowledge. It involves being aware of your emotions, your reactions, and your patterns. Through choosing quiet time each day, whether through meditation or deep breathing, and knowing that you are OK with whatever thoughts and feelings arise, you can learn to discern what moves you forward and what holds you back. Taking the time to write down this process can be a powerful addition on the path of learning to trust yourself. But you won't be perfect with this, and that's OK.

Jennifer Gunsaullus, Ph.D.

Sex Therapy & Relationship Counseling in San Diego