Scenario: You had a niggling feeling you ought to go a different way home from work and found you avoided a major accident, or bumped in to a long lost friend, or found a shop selling something you had been looking for.

These feelings of knowing something without any logical basis to it is called intuition or gut feel, to others. It is when you are aware of things that you consciously could not have been aware of and they are often triggered by something you see, hear or feel, or just happen without any prompting at all.

While some people do not subscribe to the concept of intuition, Laura Day, American author of Practical Intuition, tells us that these feelings should not be ignored because they can actually lead you to a more rewarding life.

Anyone can develop their intuition through some simple exercises and a little bit of effort. Some people are born very highly attuned to their intuition, while others need to develop those skills.

In some cases, people who are not that intuitive have taught themselves to drown out their intuitive voice. All they need to do is to start listening to it more. Try these simple steps and see how intuitive you can get after:

  • Listen; don’t be quick to dismiss that feeling! Whenever you start to fret about something, like a relationship or financial matter, pay attention, Day advises. That hunch may pay off: “Out of the blue, I started to worry about the stock market a few years ago, and I sold everything,” Day says. “I avoided a financial crisis.”
  •  Let go. If you worry or over analyze your intuitive feelings then you will block them, thereby making it harder for you to hear your intuition.
  •  Be more attuned with your senses. Intuition is said to be an extension of your senses—so paying attention to the things you smell, hear, taste, touch, and see throughout the day can sharpen your intuitive skills. You’ll pick up info that could feed your intuition and lead you in new directions.
  •  First impressions DO matter. Quite often, people will try to talk themselves out of their first impressions of anything or anyone, that is, their intuition. Intuition is those first impressions you get, so when you feel them trust them.
  •  Reality check. Not every thought that pops up is worth following. Think about what else could be at work. Maybe you’re feeling down on your new job just because you skipped breakfast and your blood sugar is low. Also, know if you are reacting to a phobia, rather than your intuition.

One comment

  1. Chris Kelley · February 7, 2012

    Humans have evolved over millions of years to interpret subtle signals. Intuition is a word we sometimes put on these interpretations that we don’t understand.

    Most of us can sense an untrustworthy person. We call them ‘shady’ or ‘sneaky looking’. How? Because we read their faces, posture and movements. We intuitively identify these traits. Is it learned? Or are we born with knowing how to do this? I think this is just one example of how intuition works.

    Chris Kelley – Framingham

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