Have you ever felt that sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach, when something just feels… off. Whatever the situation is, whether it’s a job, a relationship or even a damn movie – it feels wrong and you know you need to get out of it.
But then the thoughts start whirring – “What if I’m wrong?”, “How can I be sure?”, “I’m just going to give it a little longer”. We push that gut feeling down and with all that noise we manage to ignore the prodding, poking thoughts at the back telling us it isn’t right.
At best, we waste a couple of hours on a bad film. At worst, we waste years of our life feeling unhappy.
This feeling you see, the sinking pit, the niggling thought saying it isn’t right – this is your intuition talking. Some of us hear it in different ways, but for me it always comes back to the stomach and the thought that something isn’t quite right.
In my experience, this feeling is never wrong. I’m not going to claim to know how or why this is a thing, all I can assume is that our bodies are more knowledgeable than we give them credit for and they just have a sense for when things aren’t right.
Is there a bigger force at play here? Universal energy? Fate? I honestly don’t have a clue. I just trust it.
So, effectively, we kinda have a future telling device lodged inside us. Pretty cool, huh? The thing is, as a nation of over-thinkers (it’s not just me, right?) we have become very good at drowning out the sound of our intuition with other thoughts.
Is that feeling there because your intuition is speaking up, or did you eat some bad chicken? Is that thought right, or is that one right? Are any of them right? Chances are if you did eat bad chicken, you’ll know soon enough – but you get my point here, listening to ourselves can be difficult.
There are tools we can use however to help us quieten our minds and tap into our intuition. Here are a few that I tend to turn to when I need a little guidance.
This is when you think about the subject you’re unsure about and you just write anything that comes to your mind. It doesn’t have to make sense, it doesn’t have to be proper sentences, just cut out any filters between thought and writing.
You’ll be surprised at what your mind comes up with when you give it a little freedom.
If free-writing doesn’t come easily, you could try asking yourself a set of questions about the situation. Jot down some key questions (for example, what would my life look like in five years if I were to stay in this situation) and write down your honest answers.
Meditation and mindfulness in general is a great way to slow down and quieten your thoughts. You can build self-awareness and this in itself is imperative when it comes to listening to your intuition.
I haven’t personally used meditation to specifically work out a situation, but I’m sure it is another way of utilising meditation – here’s a description of a meditation that could be worth trying.
Walking in nature
Getting outside, anywhere quiet can help us both mentally and physically quieten down. We can become more present and aware of our surroundings and this only serves to improve our ability to hear ourselves.
Making a mood board
This is a great technique for the more visual learners among us. Think about the situation and perhaps the future of the situation and cut out pictures and words from magazines to put together a mood board.
Yes, you could use Pinterest, but there’s something about the physical act of cutting and sticking that can really help this all sink in a little deeper. But hey – do what feels good to you.
A simple but powerful tool – simply breathe deeply for a few minutes, become present and aware, then visualise a typical day, five years from now. Where are you? Who are you with? What are you doing? Are you happy or sad? What does this future look like to you and is it a future you want to make happen?
Often tapping into our intuition isn’t about holding any special rituals or anything, it’s about giving ourselves the time and space to be quiet with ourselves. Acknowledging that the situation or decision you’re turning over in your head deserves attention. Accepting that you already know the answer – you’ve just got to listen.
Do you struggle to hear your inner voice or are you two old pals? I would love to know if you have any other tools or techniques you use to tap into your intuition, let me know in the comments!
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