Updated: Apr 23, 2022
Trust is a believing in the basic goodness of you, others and the world at large. On a personal level it means being authentic, proceeding like you are valued and accepting yourself and your pathway wholeheartedly. But even feeling deeply in your own right to exist at times is challenging and we need to sometimes check in with ourselves to ensure we staying tru to our core goodness. Today I will share some effective strategies, process & practice for developing trust and share why that is important in a world full of mistrust.
When we experience intimacy with ourselves in our mindfulness practice, trust begins to develop as we discover a deeper knowing and relational aspect. At first we might come up against difficulties and notice that we don't like it and move away but in time we can move beyond these reactions. The mindfulness counselling and coaching relationship facilitates trusting & awareness to develop by holding the space and gently exploring all phenomena that comes up.
We can learn to cultivate trust and trustworthiness with ourself by taking the time to be with our bodies, minds, emotions and present with our environment and relationships. Mindfulness when practiced formally then can become a systematic learning pathway to help yourself to develop a trusting relationship including the cultivation of trust as one of the 9 mindfulness attitudes in evidence-based mindfulness programs & in mindfulness counselling.
If we do this mindfulness practice consistently over time we can come to trust the natural wisdom of our body. We will experience the unfolding of our deepest selves, and our basic goodness can shine through all our conditioning, defences, resistance and amour. The body is an ancient and complex system that is adaptive and evolutionary; even our DNA carries all the historical information about being human. Just let that land for a moment.....
The natural wisdom of our body is apparent in the whole ecosystem of life, the breath will take care of itself, ears can hear, eyes will see, feet will help us stand and walk. This natural trust was obvious to me when I witnessed my newborn baby struggle to manoeuvre up the torso of my body, propelled by the smell of milk in my breast, a body that could wiggle, lips that opened in search of love, comfort, nourishment and then latched on and attached. This then triggered a whole biological process of recovery within me. Just as the lungs will move oxygen in and out of the body where it travels back into the environment and the trees will then breathe it in reciprocating and trusting in our connection and nourishment from the earth mother.
Despite the complexity, the ecosystem of our bodies and nature works in order and in flow with everything else and this phenomena is worthy of our trust. Most of us have probably experienced what it is like to have your trust broken by other humans even at early age we receive messages of being wrong or react to a situations in ways that are not allowed. Our suffering can be intensely painful and leave us fragmented and closed off to parts of ourselves and others. The development of defences to protect our core goodness overtime can become problematic and we may lose touch with our authentic selves.
If we can learn to cultivate trust with ourselves primarily, we can open these doors in our hearts and release ourselves from the binds of our past and find it will overflow to others and into nature. From this place we experience more ease and find we have the confidence and strength to meet all our experience. This includes our difficulties and suffering as they happen across a human lifetime. When we can learn to trust our struggle, we can find the wisdom that it is part of some larger process of the conscious mind and universe.
For example have you noticed how you have a struggle you are working on your whole life? And in each new relationship or life experience at some point it shows up for you in some form or another. Trusting this process means you’re awake and aware of it and working through knowing what you need to do in order to grow and learn from the experience. When we trust our struggle we are invited into a nourishing relationship with our emotional life force and here we can find ourselves developing purpose and meaning and connect with something larger than ourselves.
When we don’t trust ourself we can still bring awareness to it and the mindfulness practice then becomes an experiment of being curious about what will help us shift into trust as the practice evolves. Bringing ourselves goodwill that this experience we’re having is exactly right for us now is also trusting in the timing and another attitude of patience can help this process in mindfulness counselling. What does trust feel like in your body? Or perhaps you notice what is like when trust isn't present. Explore the dynamic, and be gentle with your learning in this space.
Sometimes in mindfulness practice you can feel like information is missing or you feel blocked, you might feel something in the body but not understand why intellectually or have strong memories but not feel anything at all in the sensory body at all. At this time your trust might also need the support of other attitudes like kindness or some other attitude to feel close to the experience and allow the mystery of the experience to be there, trusting in the unknown, uncertainty and timing of it all. Somethings take there own time and you need not push too hard on things because trauma might be there and that needs processing and it can be difficult to navigate on your own. In working one on one with me in holistic counselling we can gradually make space for this process.
Trust can help you feel a sense of agency over your mindfulness practice and experience which is really important if you've ever had your agency taken away from you. The practice of mindfulness is approachable and natural for almost everyone, it's true some people wont like to work this way but it's a naturally occurring phenomena that everyone will have experienced at some point. It’s personal and intimate and a way of ending the conflicts we have with ourself and our critical mind. Mindfulness gives us an opportunity to develop a befriending relationship with ourself, others and life as a whole by integrating ourselves and remembering our essential nature.