My favorite poem growing up was by Shell Silverstein, called “The Voice Inside.”
Little miss independent 10 year old me was like, “oh hell yes, nobody else knows what’s right for me!”
And I loved that this poem gave me the confidence to believe in myself.
But then, I became an adult… And harder questions popped up. More difficult life changing decisions popped up. Should I marry that guy? Should I take that job? Is this the right time to move? You know, the big, life changing decisions. And I suddenly had a difficult time understanding if I was feeling trepidation because of fear or if my intuition was talking to me, steering me into a better direction.
And as I started to ask that question more and more – “Is it fear talking and I need to take a leap and trust myself, or is it my intuition trying to protect me from a life-altering catastrophic mistake?” I began to understand that our intuition or “that voice inside” shows up differently for all of us.
(*What?! You mean not everyone operates from a “GUT Instinct?”)
So today I want to share a quick rundown of the different ways your intuition can show itself. Take a look at these different categories below, and start to think about for yourself, how does my intuition show up MOST PROMINENTLY for me?
- Gut Response: (About 35% of the population) The gut is black and white. When you’re faced with a decision, you’ll feel a clear Yes or a clear No, right away.
- Emotional Intelligence: (About 47% of us) The right answer for you will always be the one that makes you feel happy or content when you think about it from all sides. You should always make decisions after you “sleep on it” and have felt through different options. Don’t make decisions right away.
- Instinctive: (11%) You’ll have an instant, intuitive knowing if something is for you or not (which may or may not make logical sense). Your job is to listen to this knowing before your brain gets in the way.
- Egoic Authority: (about 1.5% of us) You make your decisions based on your heart’s desires and willpower.
- Self Projected: (1% of us) You make decisions best when you talk it out. The act of talking through a situation with someone else you gain more clarity.
TRY IT YOURSELF
So once you identify how your intuition speaks to you most clearly, how can you start to strengthen your connection and how do you start to recognize the difference between fear and intuition? Here are a few clues:
- Contraction vs Expansion
Notice how your body FEELS. In your body, fear will feel like a contraction. It will feel like a little dip in your vibe. Your intuitive response will feel like a sigh or will feel more open and expansive. It may even feel like a little excitement, or a curiosity.
- Fear is loud. Intuition is quiet.
Your fear will do whatever it can to make itself known. It will scream at you to “look at me, look at me!” Your intuition is quiet, and will make itself known, and quietly retreat and wait for you to make your decision.
- Have you heard this before?
Often times our fear will get the better of us based off of things we’ve heard before whether through social conditioning, our parents or friends. “Oh you can’t possibly step onto that stage, stage fright is the #1 fear” or “there’s no way you can make money from gardening” These societal cues pop up in our heads as fears without us even noticing them.
Read: So what if it is your fear and not your intuition talking loundly? Check out this article from Happify on what to do to manage your fears as they pop up.
Watch: This TED Talk on intuition helps us understand how to make better decisions by starting to listen to our intuitions more consciously.
Read: There unfortunately is not a ton of scholarly research out there on intuition. BUT, this article explores the relationship between intuition and insight and how it can help in the workplace. Enjoy!