Mastery - Day 14 - TRUST IN SELF

Yesterday we considered confidence, a form of trust, but this goes somewhat deeper.

There is only one guaranteed in your life, it is there with you from the beginning and throughout your life, until the very moment you expire. While people and possessions will come and go - the one constant in your life, the only one person you can really rely on, as unromantic and even dark as that may feel to conceive of, the only person that is always there - is you.
  • The first part of the support system we all need, in order to face whatever challenge we have set, must be ourselves - trust in ourselves helps to the bring confidence to tackle the challenge.
I can think of a few components that may help us to build trust in the one person that really counts, ourselves - I'm not sure this is all of them, but there is enough to think on here I am sure.

Create an accurate narrative

We tell ourselves stories, all day every day, there is something about the human spirit that loves a good tale and we tell them about, and to, ourselves all the time - often using one of the multitude of voices that exist within our head. The story is often not fully accurate, it is tainted by all our little peccadillos, our neuroses and cognitive biases.

You need to be able to tell yourself the actual truth about what has happened, reflect accurately on where you actually are. If we call life a journey, you want to know you are where you think you are - a map is useless if you have no idea where you are on it, or are claiming to be somewhere else altogether.
  • This is where partnering with someone in your learning can be very useful - taking a coach or learning how to coach each other can help you to find a truer and less biased reckoning of your true position.

Take responsibility

  • 'You made me angry/do it/etc.'
Try shifting to a more honest appraisal:
  • 'You did this, and I became angry/did that/etc.'
We make our own choices, they may be in reaction to an outside stimulus, but we make the choice in how we react.
  • Taking ownership for our reactions means we can start to tell ourselves a more accurate story of what is going on.

Be compassionate with yourself

We all make mistakes, we all get things wrong, we all have things that we don't know - sometimes we don’t know that we don't them. The cleverest, richest, most successful, most influential person in the room has and will make mistakes.

If we are forgiving of ourselves, whilst still taking responsibility for what we've done and for our learning in response we can start to trust that our responses to challenges and the decisions we make about where we focus our efforts to improve are going to be the right ones.

The more accurate the story you tell yourself, the more you can trust that the decision you make is the right one - the more you can trust your intuition and your gut, which at times you will have to do, particularly when the path is not clear.

We can build that more accurate picture by asking those now familiar questions, and answering them more honestly and accurately:
  • What went well? - do more of that (particularly now you know with greater certainty that it did go well)
  • What wasn't so great? - you can be accurate in your response now, shifting from 'Dave made me angry and the meeting feel apart' to 'Dave was so disrespectful, I reacted by getting angry, and I failed to run the meeting effectively after that'
  • What could I do differently? - 'next time I'm going to tell Dave to park his issues if he can't put them across respectfully, I'm going to bite my lip, think about my response and deal with him carefully later'.

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