how to turn self-doubt into self-trust during periods of change

November 17, 2021 |

Growth and Self Trust



Let’s talk about the relationship between growth and self-trust, particularly in those moments when you’re going for something in life that kind of stretches and inspires you, but maybe also scares you a little bit.

I actually wanted to explore the topic of growth and self-trust this week because I’ve noticed in the coaching that I do, that we all essentially have the same experience when it comes to navigating transition and change. And so I wanted to give you a really simple way of conceptualizing that experience, using a couple of really simple lists that can serve as a nice roadmap for what you can do when you find yourself in those moments.


Now we often think the fear and resistance that arises is this deeply personal reflection of who we are when actually that fear and resistance is a natural part of change. And it arises whenever we’re faced with the unknown.

So you’re in the middle of a big change, or maybe you’re aware of the desire to change, but you aren’t really sure how to go about it. And so you reach out for support. Why do you do that? We do it because we have the desire to be held in transitional times and often, because it feels easier to be accountable to somebody else than it does to ourselves. What happens is we tend to externalise that responsibility, especially if we’re feeling unsure, and self doubt can manifest in lots of different ways.

How can I know what the next right step is?
What if I can’t do it?
Is it okay for me to take up space?
What will people think?
Do I deserve it?


Uncertainty is a normal response to the unknown, but how do we acknowledge that uncertainty and act? I remember being in one of those moments a few years ago, and I voiced those thoughts to my coach at the time. She said to me, and I’ll never forget it. “You never stop. As the version of yourself who can stand confidently in a new space, you become the person who can stand confidently in that space, through the process of working towards it day in and day out”.

So in the process of working towards growth and self-trust, you end up building two lists. And these are the lists that I mentioned at the beginning. The first is the list of everything practical you need to do to move from here to there. E.g. arrange the meeting or enlist the mentor, or make the phone call or sign up for that computer package or, you know, literally whatever it is, as you begin working that list, fear and resistance will arise.

That’s okay, because it’s going to give you important information about what needs to go on that second list, which is the list of the inner work that needs to happen to help you explore and address the fear and resistance that arises as you work towards your goal so that it can live, but it doesn’t necessarily have to stand in your way. What happens over time as a result of working that second list is that your inner story changes from, “I feel uncomfortable, therefore something must be wrong” to “I feel uncomfortable, therefore I must be growing”.


It’s not a matter of gaining more knowledge or learning another technical skill. Self-trust grows as our ability to hold ourselves in challenging moments grows, the way you build that capacity. You can start making brave decisions as you transition by committing to small actions, repeated daily, that help you build the story of yourself as somebody who ‘always has your own back’.

This is something that I know is true because I commit to this process every day. It’s something I know is true because I also see it in my coaching containers all of the time.

If this is something that interests you and that you’d like to explore a little bit more on. I’ve recently shared a free resource (based on a process I use with my coaching clients) that you can access via the link below to help you build that habit of showing up for yourself every day and build a story of yourself as somebody who can hold themselves through difficult transitions, whatever they look like in life.

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