Although it might seem like a foreign concept, following your intuition is listening to the deep wisdom of your body and soul. The idea that we don’t always need to make deep analytical decisions, can seem scary at first. There is a lot of trust needed to just listen to your gut.
Intuition is something that can be almost impossible to study. Which makes the practice of following your intuition all the more interesting. Intuitive thinking opens you up to new ideas and can help you to learn about yourself.
What is Intuition
Intuition is the gut feeling you get that seemingly comes out of nowhere. It is a subconscious action that happens because of environmental cues.
Your intuition is a quick response that requires no conscious effort. Your initial reaction of something might be your intuition at work. Intuition has no evidence or conscious reasoning involved.
Acting on intuition might leave you dumbfounded or unable to explain your reasoning.
The gut feeling you get, when you just know something, is your intuition at work. You have a wisdom that resides inside your body and you can tune into it when you learn to listen to your intuition. When you listen to your intuition and trust your intuition, you are connecting with yourself on a deeper level. You quiet your brain and allow for a message to rise from your gut. Because developing intuition is an act of listening, you need to be open to receive the message.
What Intuition is Not
The opposite of intuition is analytical and conscious. This kind of decision making is a long process, it involves collecting information, organizing thoughts, and analysis. Making decisions this way is slower and more methodical.
Because intuition and instinct are similar, it might appear that decisions made by your intuition and based around fear and keeping you safe. This is actually the opposite of true.
Intuition is not based on fear, instead, following your intuition will make you feel inspired and excited. To listen to your intuition is not to listen to the fear and ego. If you feel uncertain, you are most likely not listening to your true intuition.
Things Intuitive People Do
Don’t hold onto negative thoughts and feelings
Have a creative practice
Try to be alone
Benefits to Intuitive Thinking
Intuition leads to more creative thinking - When you follow your gut feeling you are not attached to following a certain way of doing something. You can more easily think outside of the box because you are not worried about what you know.
New perspective - By turning off the part of your brain that is rational, you can shift your perspective. It can also be easier to look at something from a different or new perspective.
Easier to make tough decisions - Listening to your intuition takes some trust. When you relinquish the need to overthink and analyze something, it gets easier to feel sure about your decision.
Improved mental well being - Less rumination and thinking keeps you out of your own head and helps you to trust in your initial idea. Intuition teaches you to trust in yourself and in turn you feel less worried.
More mindful - Listen to your gut is a skill and you have to be mindful to notice when it's giving you a message. Because of this, your overall mindfulness and self awareness increases.
More confident - “Trust your gut.” When you believe that your intuition will be right, you are trusting in yourself. Trusting in yourself is the best thing you can do for your confidence.
How to Develop Intuition - Intuition Exercises
Practice - Listening to your intuition is a skill and that means that to get better at it you have to practice it. When something comes up in your intuition, act on it right away and when the next thing comes up, act on it too. It stops feeling like you are deciding and get easier to follow your intuition every time.
Get out of your own way - When you talk yourself out of something, you are effectively letting yourself and your thoughts get in the way. Just take a leap and do something before your mind can kick in and stop you.
Mindfulness - Mindfulness and meditation are perfect for listening to your body and noticing the small things. When you cultivate a mindfulness practice, you open yourself up to having more awareness so that when you have a gut feeling you can recognize it and act on it.
Trust - Learn to trust in the unknown. Trust that your intuition will steer you in the direction you need to go. You have a natural intelligence that will guide you where you need to go if you listen to it.
Listen to your dreams - When you dream your subconscious takes control it can sometimes give you insights. You can also guide your dreams by keeping a thought in your mind until you fall asleep and letting your subconscious do the rest. You could record your dreams right after you wake up to notice if there are any reoccurring themes.
Follow what excites you - If there is something that you have wanted to do or try, don’t be afraid, just do it. Keep following things that light you up and make you excited. Your intuition can feel like excitement and wonder.
Don’t think about it - When you have something that you want an answer for, instead of thinking about it, just stop. Find something new to focus on and let the question hang out in your subconscious. Don’t think about a solution, let it come to you.
The practice of intuitive thinking is almost that of an art form. It requires a level of self awareness and introspection. When cultivated, your intuition can change the way you approach certain situations and can give you a new way of thinking. Following your intuition can be a really rewarding experience that leads to excitement and new experiences. Strengthen your intuition to connect with the deep seeded wisdom inside yourself.