Intuition does not come to an unprepared mind – Albert Einstein

If you’ve ever experienced the feeling that something in a situation wasn’t right, that things didn’t seem to add up, then you’ve experienced intuition. And if you’ve ever experienced situations where everything did add up and everything did seem to come together, that’s also your intuition. It’s an immediate knowing. You don’t know why, you can’t explain it, you just feel it and you just know it.

Intuition is a process that gives you the ability to know something without thinking. It’s below the level of your conscious awareness. It’s a process that bridges the gap between the conscious and unconscious parts of your mind. It connects emotion and reason.

Your mind and body are constantly picking up information from the world around you. When you get a strong feeling about something, your subconscious brain draws on your past knowledge and experience and remembers a particular set of circumstances – events, actions, behaviour, physical feelings and thoughts, smells, tastes and/or sounds. With lightning speed, it uses this information to warn you not to proceed or tell you that this is the right set of circumstances and to go ahead.

Intuition cuts out all the thought and leaps straight to the answer. It is noticeable enough to be acted on, yet too quick for you to need to process and understand it.

In Practice

Trust your hunches. They’re usually based on facts filed away just below the conscious level. – Joyce Brothers

Focus and pay attention! So often, intuitive messages are drowned out by all the other noise and activity that is going on in and around you. When you feel your intuition is speaking to you, ignore distractions and interruptions so that you can tune in to the true feelings, thoughts, words and images that come to your mind.

In any situation, be open to all the messages your intuition is communicating. Be alert for a combination of signals that all seem to add up to the same message. When the combination of messages that your senses are receiving does add up, your intuition will come through loud and clear; everything will instantly come together.

Be more aware of your environment. All your senses are constantly picking up information from the world around you. Being more aware of your environment – the sights, sounds, smells, etc. – on an everyday basis, will alert you when things are different; when things aren’t right.

Listen’ to your body and the signals it may be giving you. When something doesn’t feel right, or you feel unsure about something, the physical aspect of an emotion will often alert you. Think, for example, about a time when someone tried to persuade you to do something that you really didn’t think was the right thing to do. What physical feelings did you experience?

Respect other people’s intuition. Show regard and consideration for other people’s intuition. When they tell you they ‘just know’ something but can’t explain it, do take them seriously.

This is an edited extract from Emotional Intelligence Pocketbook: Little Exercises for an Intuitive Life 

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