How to Stop Sabotaging Your Intuition

Deep down, you know best–at least when it comes to deciding what is best for you. It’s called intuition, and we all have it. But many of us are sabotaging our intuitive knowledge with excess mental chatter and attic clutter that would make even the most powerful supercomputer short out.

If you’re lucky, you have a tiny voice inside your head speaking VERY clearly to you when you need guidance or understanding. But so many of us feel like we lack a strong sense of intuition—or really any innate intuition at all. Without a clear intuitive inner voice, we are always overthinking, overwhelmed, or feeling incapable of making good decisions time and time again. The intuition-less life is filled with challenge, confusion, and unhappiness.

Don’t Listen to the ‘Shoulds’

But no one has to live that way. We all have intuition, don’t worry. Some of us are just a little tone deaf when it comes to hearing what the heart is screaming out. And what happens when we can’t hear, or worse, don’t heed our intuition? Confidence shrinks, our paths become muddy and unclear, and we delve into the realm of ‘shoulds‘ to help lead the way. Well I should go to this job interview even though I’m not excited about it. I should get to the gym to workout even though I haven’t had enough sleep in weeks. I should, I should, I should.   

I should is never the way to make decisions. I should is the path towards unhappiness. You need to listen to what your heart is telling you, not the societal constructs of what is expected of you. That’s why intuition needs to lead the way.

Listen to Your Intuition

For those of us who can’t hear that little intuitive voice squeaking out from your heart, here are a handful of ways to turn the volume up and get reacquainted with what serves you the best.

1. Step back.

When things get a little crazy, the best thing you can do is back out, take a breath, and reassess. No, not necessarily a retreat or surrender, just a quick reset. You can’t take any meaningful actions when you are stretched and torn emotionally in all directions.

Take yourself out of a situation, if you can, even if it is just for a short while. Do some self-care. Watch your favorite movie, take a bath with a good book, squeeze in a little soothing meditation. Give your noggin a breather and let that the velocity of your mental whirlpool slow down a bit.

2. Do some writing.

For some reason, the intuition loves to make itself known through journaling. It’s so easy for our thoughts to pool onto the page—it’s kind of like having an on-call therapist.

Oftentimes, it just takes a little writing time to clear out the mental clutter and clarify how you feel about something. Grab a blank notebook and let ‘er rip for 30 minutes. You’ll stumble upon thoughts, desires, and concerns you didn’t even know you had because they were so hidden beneath the mental clutter.

3. Check in with yourself.

Are you unsure whether or not you should do something that makes you a little uncomfortable? Ask yourself: How excited am I about this? On a scale of 1-10, a solid ten means you are ‘so inconsolably excited that I may have just peed a little’ (see your dog when you get home from work for reference).

If you’re not feeling at least a 7 or an 8, that’s a pretty good sign that you’re ignoring some deeper feelings. Your life decisions and commitments should make you feel happy and excited, even if they’re going to be challenging. If you are filled with dread, take a deeper listen. There is probably an inner voice hoarsely whispering, don’t do it, something better will come along.  

4. Get outside and get moving.

In a pinch, take yourself for a vigorous walk outside. Nothing flushes the mental toilet bowl of negativity better than some refreshing outdoors time. It’s like a brain reset. Marvel at nature. Gaze at birds and fiery leaves in awe. Consider how richly immense the universe is and feel the gratitude that comes along with that.

Whatever you do, try not to call a bunch of friends and family members to ask their advice. If anything, only call one. Everyone has an opinion, but no one is you. Hearing a half-dozen convincing opinions on what action you should take in life will only further convolute your intuitive thought patterns. Practice truly listening to your inner voice with patience and trust. We all have an intuition. We just don’t all have the volume turned up.

Related at Care2

Image via Thinkstock.

68 comments

Deborah W
Deborah W13 days ago

To your own self be true ... step back, be silent, breath, count to 10 and, without further ado, if you feel the same, go with it. Then, at the end of the day, if you must, reevaluate what went right vs. what went wrong ... and wait for a brand new tomorrow and the do-over chosen. Think you might feel better ...

SEND
Maureen G
Maureen G15 days ago

I feel to follow your intuition you need confidence in yourself and the courage to follow through.

SEND
Mary B
Mary B15 days ago

A lot of times intuition is not rational to your mind because it has a bigger picture of what you're headed into and it's going to divert you around the problem to keep your body safe.

SEND
Kelsey S
Kelsey S20 days ago

Thanks

SEND
Janis K
Janis K23 days ago

Thanks for sharing.

SEND
Ingrid H
Ingrid H24 days ago

thanks for posting

SEND
Clare R
Clare R24 days ago

Good topic, thanks for posting.

SEND
Leo C
Leo C25 days ago

Thank you for sharing!

SEND
Sophie M
Sophie M26 days ago

Thanks for sharing

SEND