I recently created a survey asking for your questions and what you’d like to receive and one beautiful being asked this question…
How can I truly trust in the universe?
I’ve pondered this for a while before answering. It turns out there’s a lot that would like to be said here!
First of all…
How can you trust the Universe to do what?
Deliver a million dollars to your doorstep?
Give you a massage?
Turn you into a dragon?
Exactly what kind of trust would you like to have in the universe?
I bet you DO trust the universe for some things.
There are certain principles that you can trust.
Like the idea that the sun will rise in the morning, the way it has for every day of your life.
Recognize where you do trust the universe now, even if it’s not as fully as you’d like.
You already know how to trust, which means you can do it again. More.
I suspect what this person is really saying is:
I can’t trust the Universe to take care of me. If I don’t do it, nobody will.
If you’re a human being…
You’ve had the experience of someone violating your trust.
Perhaps you’ve been let down by parents, teachers, authority figures, friends, partners.
Maybe your trust has been betrayed.
We try SO HARD to manage the impossible task of controlling our lives.
The empowerment message of the personal development world promises the ability to control your thoughts and feelings in every moment.
While that feels a good deal better than being a victim of my circumstances, my experience has been that it doesn’t work that way.
Sometimes techniques and tools (kinda) work to control my thinking or change my state, but other times they don’t.
Three things occur to me:
#1 – There’s very little that I can control in this world.
I can’t control the outcome of external events or other people in my life.
Not. At. All.
It doesn’t even seem to me that I can control my thoughts or my feelings, at least not very well or for very long without a ghastly amount of effort.
#2 – What I do control creates my entire experience of reality.
So what can I control?
While I can’t control my thinking, I can choose how much attention I pay to my thoughts.
Or at least it seems that I can much of the time.
The less seriously I take my thinking, the easier it seems to go for me in terms of what I feel and how I behave.
#3 – There’s an innate natural wisdom in the universe that happens no matter what…which is both completely beyond my control and totally reliable.
Have you ever watched a baby grow?
It’s absolutely mind-blowing.
Somehow in the first three years of life, with no knowledge or thinking about what needs to be done, a baby’s brain produces over a million neural connections each second, allowing it to learn to identify objects, people, words, events, and the concept of time.
Without consciously “doing” anything, a baby reaches certain developmental stages exactly when they’re meant to happen.
Grass grows towards the sun without being told or making a choice to do so. It’s simply what it does.
There are examples of this in nature all around you every single day.
The infinite wisdom in nature is the same wisdom that runs through you and me.
Trusting the universe requires learning to trust what you know and letting go of everything else.
You can trust yourself to know what you know.
Just like you know when you need to use the bathroom or a drink of water, without having to think about it.
When we get caught up in our thinking about what we’re supposed to do or worrying about doing it wrong, it’s like being in a dust storm. It’s really hard to be clear about what you know when you can’t see your hand in front of your place.
But when the storm of thought settles, and it will settle eventually, you’ll be able to see what you can see again.
Can You Trust Yourself?
When I was in training to be an NLP Master Practitioner, we were taught how to break a board with our bare hands.
In only twenty minutes.
And then we were invited to do it for the very first time.
I had no idea if I could break that board because I’d never done it before. I practiced the breathing and visualization exercises and watched someone else do it.
But could I trust them (and myself) enough to do break the board? Or would I break my hand instead?
I was full of nervous-excitement energy as I approached that board. I took my time, focused and…
My hand went right through the board.
The funny thing was that I didn’t trust my ability to break the board until I did it.
You don’t feel trust and then let go; you let go first and then experience trust in that moment.
If you want to truly trust the universe, you must let go first, and then notice how the universe is there for you.
You don’t have to do it all at once.
What if you begin with a little trust, a little vulnerability, every day?
3 Exercises to Experience Trust
So when you’ve spent a lifetime NOT trusting the Universe to take care of you, how do you start?
#1 – Think of a time when you were taken care of. Today.
Did you wake up and have food and water to consume?
Did you get to enjoy a smile?
Did you get to breathe?
That’s the universe taking care of you.
I’m not going to get all Pollyanna on your ass about this. I’m pretty sure some crappy stuff happened in your day, too.
But even in the midst of crap…
The earth is still beneath your feet, and there’s something to be grateful for.
#2 – Thought experiment: What would it be like to trust that you’re okay, just a little?
Use that powerful imagination of yours.
What would it be like if you did trust the universe?
How would you be?
What would you do?
How would you feel?
#3 – Spend five minutes each day journaling about your experience of trust at the end of each day for 30 days.
Notice where you felt trust and where you didn’t.
Notice what you see about the nature of trusting the universe.
What can you trust 100% of the time?
Be patient with yourself as you explore the experience of trust and control. Notice what you notice.
If you explore this, your experience of trusting the universe will shift and deepen.
You’ll see something new and it will change your life.
Yours in creative play,
P.S. Over two years ago, I did a series of videos called, “21 Reasons to Stop Trying to Control Your Life” as part of an experiment in surrender.
You can watch Reason #21 here on Facebook, if you’re curious.