1-Sentence-Summary: Trust Yourself focuses on the idea of anxiety performance and workplace success from a sensitive striver’s point of view, by examining the correlation between the two and a state of burnout, and offers practical advice on how to break free from stress and perfectionism to become a better version of yourself.
Read in: 4 minutes
Favorite quote from the author:
Burnout can hit in many different ways. Sometimes you feel like dropping your work right there without caring about consequences. Others just feel like they’ve lost their purpose and go with it. But they do so without really being present at their job or giving their best. Many face a drop in productivity and creativity, although their career is going great and they’ve even been promoted recently.
Whatever the reason for your burnout, Trust Yourself by Melody Wilding steps in to help you not only prevent it from now on but also overcome it. However, this book focuses on more than that. It addresses anxiety at work, the pressure of getting everything right, and many more work-related issues in your professional life. So how can you overcome those stressful, anxiety-inducing situations?
Maybe you want to stop standing in your own way, tap into your own potential or work your way up to success in an enjoyable way. And you want to do it while taking care of your well-being in the process. You’ll have to go through three phases. First, reflect on who you are and who you want to be, then define your purpose. And then finally change your daily habits. Learn how to do that by following a few simple lessons from the book.
Here are my three favorite ones:
- Build your self-awareness and know your strengths before everything else.
- Sensitive strivers have to overcome the Honor Roll Hangover.
- Overthinking can be challenging to overcome, but you must do it.
If these lessons don’t make much sense right now, stick with me as I’ll explain them one by one!
Lesson 1: To become successful, you must first become self-aware
Knowing where you stand in life is the first step towards building a successful path for yourself. Many of us are sensitive strivers without even realizing it. And this can stand in the way between us and our goals. If you identify yourself as someone who is highly emotional and easily affected by your environment, you’re a sensitive striver. While it doesn’t interfere with your career, being a sensitive person can bring you a lot of stress and anxiety.
A sensitive striver is not someone who’s necessarily a perfectionist, an introvert, or an overachiever. Instead, you just feel emotions at a deeper level than an average person. You’re more empathic and warm than those around you. In fact, these qualities even helped you achieve your endeavors so far. And they will keep on helping you if you know how to use them. First, acknowledge and rate them accordingly, so that you’ll know what your strengths are.
As a sensitive striver, you’ve got the following qualities: sensitivity, thoughtfulness, responsibility, inner drive, vigilance, and emotionality. Taken to an extreme, these qualities can become a liability. As such, use the STRIVE qualities scale from the book to figure out how each of them applies to you. After you do so, it’ll be much easier to determine which ones are your most prominent ones and what to improve.
Lesson 2: The Honor Roll Hangover is the biggest obstacle you’ll face in the process of becoming your best self
If you identify yourself as an overachiever, looking for validation from sources like a promotion, someone’s approval, and you work harder every day just to feel good about your productivity levels, I’ve got some news – you’ll have to go through the worst hangover of your life! The author calls it the Honor Roll Hangover, and it’s a form of achievement addiction that you just can’t get rid of.
The constant need to feel productive, work and perfect your craft, and the guilt that follows a non-productive day are all symptoms of a high-anxiety performer. Unfortunately, they can cost you your inner peace and drastically decrease the quality of your life. Therefore, you must first acknowledge your condition and then overcome it.
There are three elements that drive the Honor Roll Hangover: perfectionism, or fearing failure and being too self-critical, over-functioning, which implies overworking and fearing that everything is urgent and your responsibility, and people-pleasing, consisting of the inability to say no and avoiding conflict. To fix this issue, you must first give up some of your goals and focus on the most important ones first.
If a goal is bringing you more distress than benefits, ditch it. Moreover, learn to prioritize ruthlessly and cut down your to-do list as much as you need to. Contrary to what you think, you’ll actually increase your productivity levels! Then, cure your comparison. Jealousy may fuel your ambitions, but it’ll do so in an unhealthy way, and when you succeed, you won’t sense that self-fulfillment you’ve been aiming for. Lastly, ditch the fear of missing out on opportunities. Only sign up for what you feel comfortable doing.
Lesson 3: Stop being an overthinker and sabotaging yourself
Overthinking can be challenging to overcome. After all, it’s a battle that your mind has to fight against itself. We all have a near-constant stream of thoughts and a never-ending mind chatter. Overthinking can affect your ability to make decisions, assess situations objectively, and the overall quality of your life. An overthinker analyzes a situation over and over again in their head, usually just to come to a conclusion far from the truth.
Therefore, always keep in mind that the stories you tell yourself aren’t always true and may not reflect reality. Still, fixing this negative habit takes more than that. For starters, try the naming and reframing strategy. Name your negative thoughts and reframe them into a different perspective to help your mind interpret them on a more positive note.
The goal of this strategy is to make you see the bigger picture and analyze everything from different perspectives. For example, instead of saying “If I don’t fulfill this task, it means I’ve failed.” try saying “I’ve done a lot of successful tasks so far, so a few drawbacks don’t define me.” See? With a little bit of word changing, everything sounds more positive. At times, your overthinking thoughts may take different forms.
Perhaps you can’t accept a compliment, saying that everyone could’ve done it, or you’re quick when it comes to jumping to conclusions, or maybe you just expect the worst of a situation. No matter the type of overthinking your mind produces, make sure to always double-check that thought from a different point of view, and reframe it so that it becomes a positive affirmation.
The Trust Yourself Review
Trust Yourself offers its reader a multitude of practical advice on how to become the best version of themselves, overcome negative thoughts, identify their dominant characteristics as sensitive strivers, and use everything to their advantage. Reading this book will have you conduct a powerful introspection and realize what kept you from achieving your full potential all along. Implementing the valuable advice from it will help you get past your insecurities, self-doubt, and finally, be on your way to success.
Who would I recommend the Trust Yourself summary to?
The 30-year-old employee who feels like they’re too sensitive at work and seen as being weak, the 25-year-old who has a hard time advancing in their career and trusting themselves, or the 27-year-old overachiever who takes everything as a competition and is close to facing burnout.