Good morning, everybody! Welcome to The Work Of Becoming podcast, Episode 69: Do I Trust Myself To Get It Done… This is a very in-the-moment podcast. It’s a very in-the-moment reflection for me.
So, I’m sitting here. I’m recording podcasts, and it is just about noon, and at noon I typically take a break and I go eat lunch. I have been more diligent about taking that break and eating lunch lately because a lot of times I don’t want to, but I really need to do so because that is a form of basic self-care, but it got me thinking today, because I was really feeling resistant to stopping these podcasts, putting them on pause, going and eating lunch, and then coming back, and I asked myself why. Where is this resistance coming from? What is the possible downside that my brain is seeing? What is the actual danger of taking a lunch break? And the interesting response that came to me sort of from my brain was that if I stop now, I won’t get it done at all. So, essentially, I don’t trust myself to come back and work on it and come back and work on getting the rest of the podcasts for March recorded. And so, I feel like I have to sit here until the project is 100% complete because I don’t trust myself to finish out the project later.
And this is really interesting for me to kind of observe because, on one hand, I used to have a really, really big struggle with finishing things. I was like — this is half a joke, but it’s a real thing. I bought a book once called Finish: Give Yourself the Gift of Done, and I didn’t finish the book. [Laughs] And so, there was a time in my life where if I walked away from something, maybe it wouldn’t get done. Maybe it would get abandoned or maybe it wouldn’t get done until the last minute versus if I’m on a roll with something, and I stick it out, and I push it all the way through to the finish line, then I get the comfort of knowing that it is done. I get the joy of checking it off that list.
But as I was sitting here reflecting today, I was thinking about the detrimental effect that has on my self-care because I don’t want to get up and refill my water bottle I don’t want to take a break and go workout, I don’t want to pause my work and take my dog for the mid-day walk that he desperately wants. It all comes back to that lack of trust. Then I started to think about, okay, if that’s an avoidance goal, if what I want to stop doing is getting stuck in my work, if what I want to stop doing is not trusting myself, what is the approach version of that? What I want is a world where I do take the break, and maybe it’s even easy for me to take the break (going back to what we talked about two episodes ago) because I have cultivated a deep and powerful and loving sense of self-trust with myself. I know that I am the person who will come back to my desk and sit down and work on the podcasts again even if I do take a lunch break, and I think this is part of sort of a larger theme which is that sometimes — and I say this to Alliance clients all the time — sometimes when we change, it takes a while for our brain to catch up to that change.
So, I have gone through the process of becoming a person who can self-regulate what I do during the day. If I tell myself I’m gonna get X done at work, if I tell myself these are my top three tasks, those things, 99.9% of the time, are getting done. I follow through. I have self-accountability specifically when it comes to my work and my business. That is something that I worked on for months and months and months and something that I personally had a coach help me and guide me through, I would say probably two years ago. But now, I am a person who can trust myself to come back and do the podcasts or to come back and work on the big project. And so, it’s about my self-concept, allowing my self-concept and allowing my behavior patterns to catch up with that new reality.
So, if you’re listening to this today, I want you to ask yourself, “Where am I not giving myself credit for the way that I’ve changed? Where am I not recognizing that I am more capable than I was before?”
I will give you one last example really quick. I was working with a client once who was working on mindful eating in Alliance Coaching, and she really wanted to just be more intentional about the way she was eating, about what she was eating, and we worked on it for several weeks using behavior change tools, and then she was going to her boyfriend’s for the weekend, and she was like, “I know I’m gonna screw up. I know I’m gonna go overboard,” and I looked at her, and I was like, “Person,” I won’t say her name, “You have grown so many skills the past couple of weeks. Look at all these situations that you’ve handled that you wouldn’t have handled before.” And I told her, I was like, “I think you are perfectly capable of mindful eating even in this difficult situation. I think your self-concept hasn’t caught up with the changes that you’ve made, and she was like, “Wow, that’s a really interesting point.”
And so, she went into the weekend with the perspective of, “Can I allow myself to trust the work that I’ve put in and the coaching that I’ve gotten,” and, lo and behold, she came back the next Monday, and she was like, “I had an amazing weekend! I ate the cookies that my boyfriend bought, but I stopped when I was full,” and she had a really, really good experience, and it wasn’t because she finally learned the skills. It was because she finally learned the skills and she trusted that she had them.