My First Quarter of Trust

JoAnna Bennett

JoAnna Bennett, O’Brien Communications Group

1 April 2021

In each of the last three years, instead of making a New Year’s resolution, I made myself a promise. This year, I promised to learn how to trust myself. Since the first quarter of the year has passed, I’d like to check in with myself as well as you lovely folks that hold me accountable.

My Learning Process

We all have different ways of learning. For me, reading is the way I absorb information best. I love to read and expand my thought processes by discovering what other people have learned before me. I started with rereading the book, Inward, by yung pueblo. One of the quotes that resonated with my current promise was, “I trust the ones who are always seeking to grow.” I agree wholeheartedly. And so, in order to trust myself more, I had to commit to growth. I don’t have all the answers. I never will. And that’s okay. I can learn to trust myself more by continuing to learn and grow.

Another exercise I like to do when it comes to learning is to read quotes. I found a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson that confirmed this year’s promise to myself to be worthwhile. “Self-trust is the first secret to success.” I couldn’t help but wonder what the context for his quote was, so I did some research and found he wrote an essay in 1871 titled Success, in the book Society and Solitude: Twelve Chapters. The essay continues as follows:

Self-trust is the first secret of success, the belief that if you are here the authorities of the universe put you here, and for cause, or with some task strictly appointed you in your constitution, and so long as you work at that you are well and successful. It by no means consists in rushing prematurely to a showy feat that shall catch the eye and satisfy spectators. It is enough if you work in the right direction.

If Ralph is right, by working at my inherent trust, I’m already well and successful. I’m not sure I can fully accept that, but I must admit to feeling like I’m on the right track.

Getting There

The definition of trust is, “a firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something.” I do believe that I’m reliable, truthful, able, and strong; although, I’m not sure I firmly and consistently believe those things. I do have my moments of oscillating doubt.

Perhaps those oscillations are just part of the journey to fully trusting myself. And for right now, I’ll accept those moments for what they are – bumps in the proverbial road, bumps that are helping me continue to learn and grow.

And growth is enough when you’re growing in a trustworthy direction.