Rebuilding Self Trust

Posted August 27, 2012 by Monica O'Connell in Life After Five

The topic of body image resonates with many people.  Our conversation last week sparked a further and more in depth chat with friends and clients about why we’re so psychotically mean to ourselves and our bodies.

It occurred to me that we are really unpredictable to our bodies.  One morning we decide we like our hair, compliment ourselves about it, celebrate it, take care of it and the next morning we get a little crazy.  We compare.  Her hair is and my hair is not.  We do the same thing with our thighs.  One minute we’re using them in an amazing way by riding our bikes or doing squats or running marathons and five seconds later they become a mortal enemy.

I don’t know about you but when I’m around unpredictable people, I tend to not trust them.  If my friend compliments my hair one minute and 24 hours later is verbally attacking my hair, I’d probably think they were a sucky friend.

I wouldn’t trust them or what they had to say.  After putting up with verbal abuse, for some people starvation, psychotic bargaining, and overall meanness, chances are pretty great that our bodies don’t trust us.  Why would they?

Last week I gave you some ways to self love and boost your body image.  Have you practiced any of it?  A few weeks ago, a conversation about how shame shows up in our lives. This conversation today sounds really similar.  Each time, I’m giving you another perspective and another way to do it differently.

Today it is about learning how to trust ourselves and building self respect.  In every other relationship with people, trust and respect are earned.  This usually comes with integrity.  We do what we say what we’re going to do and we take care of what we promised to accomplish.

Start some of these practices and you may find that trusting yourself gets easier:

  • If you’ve been disrespecting yourself by the promise of the gym every morning but you choose the snooze instead, start being predictable.  Either change your goal or get your butt to the gym when your alarm goes off.  Start building your body’s trust in you.  Start building your muscle memory.
  • If you’ve been untrustworthy by promising your body you’d eat healthy but instead you’re putting junk in your body, quit it.  Don’t make promises you can’t keep.  I’d fire you as my friend if you lied to me week after week.  Be impeccable with your word to yourself.
  • This week, quit making self-promises you can’t keep.  And that shady business of telling yourself you’d take care of you but not really doing it, knock it off.
  • Earn your body’s respect this week.  How are you going to do that? Make a promise you can keep with your body.  Share it and I’ll totally cheer you on and hold you accountable!

About the Author

Monica O'Connell

Monica O’Connell is a Licensed Marriage and Family therapist in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In her practice, she spends her career cheering on “Career Girls” as they learn how to get the most out of life. Monica works with arguably some of the most successful, intelligent, inspiring women in the Twin Cities who tackle self-discovery, career success, and what’s getting in the way of their true desires. She shares her favorite moments as those “best described not by words but by the stomach aching, face soreness that comes from spending an entire day laughing with loved ones.”