Can’t Make Decisions? Trust Your Heart, Not Your Head
How’s your power of self trust?
Do you have trouble making big decisions for yourself, by yourself? Do you feel the need to crowd source your next step, your vacation destination, the decision to quit your job?
When you asking others for their opinions, listing out the pros, the cons and the justifications– Are you looking for inspiration? Confirmation of a decision? Or are you seeking the ability to blame someone else’s instincts should things go wrong?
Gaining a wider exposure to options is amazing. The access to information we have at our fingertips is extraordinary (and overwhelming!). Soaking up knowledge from someone who’s “been there, done that” is useful.
But… Letting your Twitter followers make major life decisions for you is a sign that you don’t trust your own instincts. Relying on your parents or your partner or your gaggle of girlfriends to “decide” points to reliance.
Remaining in a constant state of indecision is draining on you and all those in your life.
We’re so used to looking outside ourselves for answers, perhaps we’ve forgotten we’re capable of making decisions for ourselves!
We have to trust in our ability to handle what life throws at us, to make the big decisions on our own. If we don’t have that self trust, we’ll be walking around in a state of fear, a cloud of dependence.
Do we not trust ourselves because we’re constantly bombarded with messages that we’re not enough? Not pretty enough? Not productive enough? Not successful enough?
What happened to knowing, at the deepest level, that we ARE enough?
“I am larger and better than I thought. I did not know I held so much goodness.” —Walt Whitman
Any of this ringing a bell?
I don’t have the end all, be all answer. In fact, I’m writing about self trust because I’ve spent the last few weeks in a needy state of “But what should I do? How do I choose? What happens if that’s wrong? What if I fail? Just tell me- what would you do?”
Ugly, I tell you. The Big Man would agree…
So, I’m owning it. I’m trying my very best to rely on the faith I have in myself. The knowledge that I can handle whatever life throws at me. It’s my life after all. I need to practice turning inward for the answers, trusting myself at the deepest level. How? Read on, sista’, read on.
How to Practice Self Trust
Pay attention to your physical reactions.
Start at the most basic level by really getting in touch with how your body feels. Does one option give you a lift in your heart, a feeling of lightness? Does another cramp your stomach?
I manifest stress through tightness in my shoulders and neck, resulting in massive headaches. When I recognize that I’m suffering from my stress headaches, I have to ask myself- what is wrong? Where is my life out of touch with my values, my personal integrity?
Consult your heart, not just your head.
Many of us well-educated women make all of our decisions with logic. “It only makes sense to do… “Logically, I should…” “It would be stupid not to…” We have confidence that we can make the best decisions through excel spreadsheets and polls, on expected returns and majority opinions.
But you can be a confident, deliberate woman and still not trust yourself. Self trust is not the same as confidence. As Jack Gibb writes in Trust “Confidence is more cerebral, more calculated, and based more on expectations than trust is. Trust can be and often is instinctive…. It is something very much like love.”
Have you ever walked into a new place, a new city and felt a sense of recognition? Or met someone who feels like an old friend? Pay attention to that reaction- your heart is trying to tell you something!
With decisions, can you access your intuition? Your heart’s sense of right or wrong? Free from journaling is an amazing way to access your heart’s answers–no editing, no thinking too hard–just asking yourself a questions and letting an answer pour forth.
Make the decision already
The anxiety that accompanies ”indecision” can be debilitating and distracting. It can go on so long that eventually you just accept it as your natural state. Except that it isn’t…
When you’re not making a decision, it may be a case of your head battling your heart. Or it may be that choice conflicts with all the advice you’ve been given. Allow for other’s opinions.
But then make your own.
Sometimes just making the decision, diving in, trusting your gut is the best thing to do. Stop justifying your reasons for waiting, for pausing, for gathering more information. Trust, baby, Trust.
It’s all within your power.
“When we trust ourselves, we can better navigate the waters of challenging emotional times-when we feel lost or grieving, angry, or afraid-believing somewhere in our hearts and souls that we will make it, even if we’re not sure how or when. We’re safe in our own care.” –M.J Ryan