Trust Issues

I’ve been having trust issues with myself lately. Usually, you have them with other people. But I’ve been generally good with other people and newly untrusting of myself. Like many personal issues, it didn’t happen overnight. It happened in small little steps. And now that I’m aware of it, I’m trying to make it right. But, as is what happens when trust is shattered, it takes time to rebuild.

Maybe this sounds familiar to you. Maybe you, too, have set lofty goals or made certain diet or exercise promises to yourself. You do whatever prep work it takes to make sure that you can achieve that goal. And then when the time comes to actually do it, something happens. You flake on yourself.

Or maybe you have every intention of showing up to a place where you said you’d be. You make plans, you pick the outfit, you assure other people you’ll be there. But when the time comes, again you stop yourself. You find an excuse to stay home or do something else – something more “productive.”

You set aside time that will definitely be used for that big project you keep wanting to work on. But when the time comes up, you waste it checking one last notification which leads to one quick search which leads to one more question which leads to you blowing all the time you had.

It happens quickly and with small – not big – decisions. 

In some ways, I am trustworthy. I certainly try to be honest and authentic as much as I can. But I’ve found that I’ve lately been more trustworthy with other people than with myself. I keep making and breaking promises with myself. I’m like the guilty parent who says they’ll do bigger and better next time, but can’t even seem to show up once despite all the promises.

Part of the problem is that I’m making too many promises. And that comes from having too many focuses that are all over the place. I keep promising all sorts of elements of myself that I’ll be totally dedicated to them. And I’m not.

I also am very ambitious and have lofty goals. So I know those goals require big dreams and huge chunks of energy and attention. Rather than focusing on exactly what I can do to better myself and only promising myself to do that one thing (or maybe those couple things), I promise myself I’m going to do all the things almost every day.

And when I inevitably can’t live up to the lofty promises I made for myself, I feel like I haven’t done anything. I completely overlook the thingsI have done. And I make myself a promise that I’ll do better. But if you’ve ever been promised something by someone who didn’t follow through before, there’s a visceral reaction when that person makes a future promise. You don’t believe them. You’ve built up trust issues.

I don’t like this feeling. I don’t like promising myself I’ll do certain things and not following through on all of them, so I completely overlook and fail to recognize the accomplishments I do make. I know it’s not a healthy headspace. But I’ve made and broken so many little promises with myself, it’s hard to reset.

Hard…but not impossible. Every time I say I’m going to get up early and I do, I rebuild trust with myself. Every time I make plans to go to yoga and I follow through, I’m building trust with myself. Every week when I promise myself (and you) that there will be a blog here for your perusal, I’m building trust with myself.

The key is to stop overextending and promising myself things I don’t actually have the capability to do. That way, I can recognize and enjoy the accomplishments I do achieve. And I have more energy and focus to achieve more. I like challenges, but I hate broken promises. So I’ve got to find that balance.

Maybe you know what I’m talking about, too.

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