It’s all about trust

Their trust definitely didn't cause them to fall to their deaths (I think, I don't know)
Their trust definitely didn’t cause them to fall to their deaths (I think, I don’t know)

Just chilling out waiting for my sofas to be taken away.  Oh wait, that was five hours ago, and I still have my sofas.  They won’t budge.  I’m starting to wonder if they’re cursed – the mere suggestion of my sofas needing to be taken away is enough to turn even the most respectable house clearance professional into a paragon of unreliability.

So instead of having my sofas taken away, I’ve been enjoying some much-needed downtime.  I had my last iaido session today (one of the martial arts I do – the one with a sword), and everyone pooled together to get me a leaving card and a present.  The card wished me luck in Japan, and the t-shirt had a fearsome warrior on the front, standing steadfast against the silhouette of a red moon.  It was such a nice gesture I felt a little overwhelmed.  I’ve been encouraged to wear it to the karaoke party on Saturday, so perhaps a picture will be forthcoming.

There’s so much still to do and I don’t know how on earth I’ll do it – I only trust that I will do it.  Okay, it seems like it’s time for another of Matt Bowen’s Secret Imperatives for Prosperous Ascendency!


Trust yourself.  You’ve gotta trust yourself.  If you’re full of doubts you’ll never take a chance on things that are important to you – you’ve just got to trust that somehow, someway, you’ll do it.  For me, that’s shifting my sofas by Wednesday.  No matter how many people I ring, it seems no one will take them, and even if they say they will, they don’t.  But mark my words, come Wednesday, they’ll be gone.

(flash forwards to Wednesday)

My sofas are gone.  Wham!

I’ve moved into my mum’s place for a week, flying to Japan the Wednesday after.  It’s starting to feel pretty real now – it’s only a week away.  There’s still a lot to do, but it’ll get done.  I trust me to do it.

This whole experience has been about trust.  A year ago I decided, “hey, I want to move to Japan.”  Immediately afterwards I thought, “uh, are you sure?”  I wasn’t sure, but I thought about it.  What was the biggest reason I didn’t want to do it?  “Hmm, it sounds like a lot of effort.”  Man, that has to be the lamest excuse ever not to do something, so I decided in that moment to do it.

But there was another factor: what if it all goes wrong?  What if I can’t do it, or I’m not up to it?  I’m pretty sure everyone doubts themselves and it’s not just me.  I think some people are just better at hiding it.  In my case I don’t hide it but I prefer to lure it out and showcase it on my blog so I can smash it in the face publicly.

Get out the way of yourself

Well, here I am a year later, and I’ve done it.  It seems it doesn’t matter how big the task, or how uncertain the outcome, if I decide that something’s genuinely important to me and to really go for it, I can do it.  I think that’s true of anyone.  The major obstacle isn’t anything that will come at you somewhere down the path – it’s deciding to walk the path in the first place.  The obstacle is you.

It’s not easy to trust yourself though – I acknowledge that.  A lot of people make the mistake of relying on stuff like “reasons” or “evidence.”  You don’t need any of that.  You don’t need any reason to trust yourself.  Just decide to do it.

If you’ve got something you kind of want to do but it feels a bit difficult, or you have doubts, or you don’t know how you’ll do it, then forget all those things.  The barriers are mirages.  You don’t have to find answers to those questions before you can pass them – you can stroll right through.  It’s all in your head.  So do it.  Go on.

Or just, you know, start a blog announcing it so that you kind of have to.  Hey, it worked for me.


Matt Bowen

Matt is a blogger, budoka and software developer. He sold his things, quit his job and moved to Japan to study Japanese and martial arts. Sometimes he writes about it.

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