Intuitive Intelligence

Living Well

When my stepdaughter was ten, she walked into a local restaurant and asked the Greek owner if he would sell her an over-sized wooden rosary that he’d brought from his homeland and hung behind the sales register. She knew I’d seen it and liked it, and she wanted to give it to me as a present. It was a bold thing for a little girl to do. She said the idea came to her, and it seemed like it would work out successfully, so she felt confident and wasn’t nervous about asking, and she just kept moving forward with her plan. And in the end, instead of selling it to her, he gave it to her.

More important than the decision we make about what action to take is whether we feel good about our choice because what we feel indicates our expectation of the result. When we have several options to choose from, and we feel good about all of them, any one of them can work for us because there are many ways to get to where we want to be. But if we feel bad about our choice, it’ll be difficult to create a positive outcome, no matter how hard we try.

We turn our decisions into a success by continuing to think supportive thoughts and by focusing on the positive elements of the choice, which causes energy to move and allows the how to present itself.

Say Yes, and then believe in the Yes.

Second-guessing a decision – by continuing to weigh the pros and cons, or by focusing on why it won’t be successful, or by complaining about the consequences – un-makes the decision and blocks its success. “Do it, or don’t do it, but don’t whine about it.”

It can be helpful to ask, “Why do I want this particular outcome?” because it directs our attention toward that, instead of something else. Looking at what we want and why we want it leads us toward solutions and desired outcomes, while focusing on how and when and who can keep us stuck at the level of the problem. Our task is to safekeep our decisions so that our desired results continue manifesting.

We have an inner knowing that’s always leading us toward positive outcomes, so our best answers can originate inside us. But most of us were taught as children to neglect our intuitive intelligence. If we can’t see it, touch it or feel it, it’s “just our imagination,” and not valid or reliable.

Albert Einstein said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited, while imagination encircles the world. Logic will get you from A to Z, while imagination will get you everywhere.”

If we fear that acting on intuition sacrifices clarity and intellect, we’ll “take a few days to decide,” and we’ll add our interpretation, clouding reality with our filters, beliefs and biases.

By acting spontaneously, we may make a “mistake,” but if we feel OK about that and we’re willing to take a risk, mistakes lose their power to affect us negatively. If we’ve already decided that it’s all right to make mistakes, whatever we do will be all right.

Our intuitive intelligence is our sense of knowing even when there’s no intellectual or tangible proof. We may experience it as:

  • Body signals: We get goose bumps or a fluttery stomach.
  • Déjà vu: We sense that we’re experiencing something familiar.
  • Synchronicity: We think of someone, and suddenly that person calls.
  • Empathy: We pick up a vibe from someone.
  • Hunches and impulses: We sense which direction to take.

My friend’s fourteen-year-old dog was ailing, and he told me that he felt confident he’d know intuitively when it was time to let her go. And sure enough, he got up one morning and knew that was the day. He picked up Rydette and laid her on the passenger seat in his truck. Then he drove her to the beach where they sat together on the shoreline watching the waves. Then they drove to a bakery where he bought her a chocolate doughnut. And when my friend felt complete, he drove Rydette to the vet. Afterwards, he took her body back to his house, carried her out to the baseball field he’d laid out on his five acres of land, and buried her under home plate. He says that now he pictures Rydette happily running for home.

To access our intuition on purpose, we first need to turn the volume down on our chattering minds and twitching bodies. Then we need to let go of the belief that we must figure everything out logically and be willing to set aside external factors in order to receive answers from inside.

Thomas Edison used to sit in a chair until he felt so relaxed that he would drop a set of brass balls resting in his hands, and then he would ask his question and wait for an answer to come from inside himself. Albert Einstein used to lie on his back and observe cloud patterns, expecting an answer to rise up from inside. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart said that he didn’t compose music, but instead, listened for it.

Everyone has a unique way of experiencing his or her intuition: “Suddenly, the big picture flashed before my eyes.” “I felt it in the pit of my stomach.” “I heard my own voice inside my head.” “I literally felt pulled in that direction.”

The bridge between our conscious awareness and our intuitive unconscious is like a muscle that grows stronger with use. And with practice, we can learn to ask an inner question and immediately receive an answer.

And the answer may sound like this: “I have this inclination that I can’t shake, a clear vision that I want to move toward, and a feeling of assuredness that I can make it happen. I feel compelled!”

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Author, Blogger, Contributor to Thrive Global, The Good Men Project and HuffPost