What Is Intuition And How To Listen To It?
“Your mind will answer most questions if you learn to relax and wait for the answer.”
– William S Burroughs
A few years back, I was in what I thought was a loving relationship. My boyfriend and I had been together for three years and, as far as I was concerned, we were going to be forever.
After a few duds, losers and mishits, I had found the One.
One day, I got a text while at work from him which completely turned my world upside down.
He told me directly that he’d been cheating on me with another woman.
He said he was sorry, but that the the guilt had been eating him up inside and he had to tell me.
His fling was now over with the other woman after he’d realised how stupid he’d been and how much he stood to lose if he continued it.
He explained to me that we had hit a rocky moment in our relationship and that I wasn’t giving him all the attention he craved and deserved. As such, he found solace in the arms of another woman.
But he was repentant, wanted me to forgive him and wanted us to carry on the way we were.
I froze up.
What should I do? How do I react to this? What do I say?
I had no idea what to do.
I sat there, my jaw dropped, staring back and forth between the text and space.
I felt hollowed out. I was in my office but I wasn’t. I was somewhere else. My entire world, all my visions of the future, had changed in an instant.
My boyfriend that I loved had dropped the ultimate bombshell and I had no idea how to react.
Edgar – my manager – told me to snap out of my daydream and get back to work. There was stuff to be done.
My friend Mary meanwhile came over to show me her love bite.
I knew that I couldn’t function. I couldn’t deal with anything right now.
My boyfriend was waiting for a response, yet I was blank. I was trying to fill in a spreadsheet on the computer but I couldn’t focus.
Then I knew exactly what I needed to do. I had to get outside, take a breather, get away from the office and its inanity.
So that’s what I did. I asked for the rest of the day off.
A few hours later, I sent a text to my boyfriend explaining that it was now over between us both.
I couldn’t trust him anymore, not after what had happened.
It was my intuition speaking.
Another part of me was saying that I should take him back, forgive him, and repair the damage.
After all, I had invested so much time and emotion into this relationship, so why break it all off now because of some stupid mistake? We were going to get a house together, maybe have kids.
But my intuition made it clear that my boyfriend was a hive of secrets. If he had cheated on me once, and if his way of revealing the truth was via text, he could do it all again.
Listening to my intuition was so empowering. I felt full of energy and joy, even though I’d just broken things off with the only man I had truly loved.
My intuition, yet again, had guided me. I had listened, and once more she hadn’t let me down.
Intuition can be defined as our gut instinct towards a particular response or action. It’s the opposite of learned response.
It’s a hunch, a feeling deep down inside you that tells you when to make a move.
We often don’t know why our intuition makes the decisions it does, but there’s no need to question it. It’s the process that lets us know something without having to spend time rationally and analytically dissecting it.
For example, you might be wondering what to wear today. So you ask yourself, “What should I wear today?”
Your intuition suggests red.
You ask, Why?
Your intuition doesn’t have a proper reason. “It just looks and feels right,” is the only explanation you need.
Or maybe red makes you feel happy and empowered. What more do you need?
But how do we listen to our intuition?
Switch Off Your Inner Critic
Sometimes, when your intuition tries to speak and guide you in the right direction, your inner critic will pipe up and try to rationalise whether this is the right response or not.
“Wait a minute,” it will say, “shouldn’t we look at this from all angles? Shouldn’t we at least take some time to analyse whether or not this is the right decision?”
Switching off your inner critic allows you to listen to your intuition. It stops your gut instinct from being drowned out by the voice of reason.
Allow your intuition to operate without the fear of being ridiculed.
Let Go Of Your Resentments And Attachments
A few years back, I was a massive hoarder. My boyfriend wanted me to clear out all the stuff from my attic, but I just couldn’t do it. I clung onto the things I had because there were so many attachments.
The problem with such deep-rooted attachment (or even resentment) is that we allow it to cloud our judgement, and we allow it stop us from letting go completely.
Once you let go of these attachments, you are able to relax and trust your intuition. You begin to listen to it and rely on it.
Listen To Your “Aha!” Moments
Ever been in a conversation with someone and had an “aha!” moment? I bet you have. We all have.
Maybe you’ve been trying to get a work colleague to figure out a problem, only to get the feeling that he needs to think about it overnight rather than today.
Or maybe you’ve been chatting to a man you really like, only to suddenly get the feeling that he’d really appreciate it right now if you gave him your number.
Rather than wait to see how things pan out, listen to these “aha!” moments and follow them accordingly.
How to listen to your intuition? What are your best tips?