Is it true?
Is there just one question which will guarantee to banish all self doubt?
Well, to be honest, I'm really not sure ! Actually, no, there probably isn't, there must be more, so lets forget that ridiculous assumption we have made up, convinced ourselves it is good to focus on, to be attached to, to pin all our hopes or desperation on, and to live into a world of made up truth.
But hold on. Maybe, just maybe, there is more to this than first meets the eye?
Most of what we 'hear' in our heads is our own voice, our own stories, and our own assumptive truths. As we cling on to them, they become stronger and stronger, then become beliefs, then fact - yet we are yet to prove it.
Take self doubt " I am no good at sport" - or what ever it is which you do not think you are any good at, or find yourself facing demons and lack of conviction. Next, ask yourself 'is that true' - really, is it true? Is there really no sport which you are good at? Is there really no way you can stand up and speak in front of an audience? Are you really a failure in every aspect of life?
No, you are probably not!
So now think again about all the things you have achieved, no matter how small, list them (against the few negative things which led to that thought).
Now we have a negative assumption, which when asked 'is it true?' we answer with all the reasons why it is not. Now you have evidence to show that it is not true, the list is there in front of you! The issue is, that it is far easier to find things wrong than right. Armed with the facts, we start to feel far better in our minds.
A quick example - all over the country this month, hundreds upon hundreds of brass musicians are taking part in competitions (if you have watched Brassed Off, its when they play in the hall - not staggering drunkenly down the street trying to march). After weeks of seeking perfection, during the actual performance on the day, if there is anything which does not got 100% to plan, many people will view themselves as a failure. Emotions will run high, friendships tested to their maximum, and even relationships damaged - all because they get tied up in seeking perfection, making up stories in their heads, and not asking the question - Is That True.
Just because a trombone player messes up a solo, it doesn't make him a failure, or rubbish, or past his best. It just means that he didn't play the music as he wanted to - and so what - life goes on. Among the thousands of notes he has played on that day, a couple were not quite right. I don't know about you, but I'd take 99% perfection every day!
So, when filled with self doubt, worry, angst and upset, ask that one simple question, which may not be the key to all suffering, but could help you out - IS IT TRUE ?
Now how about the lunar landing ? Well, that is a topic for another day...
Is it true? Is it really true what you just told yourself??