Your intuition. It’s something that already exists within you, but how do you begin to trust it? Learning to trust your intuition can take time, practice, and patience for some of us.
For others, decisions are made solely based off of an intuitive hit or gut-feeling.
So, if you’re curious about your intuition vs. instinct, what it means to trust your intuition, and how to know if yours is leading you in the right direction, keep reading! I’m also sharing some tips on how you can begin to trust your intuition right away.
What is intuition?
Your intuition is a guide. When tapped into it, you begin to understand, know, and even anticipate things almost immediately. There is no need for conscious decision-making, as the decisions are being made on another level outside of your usual reasoning patterns.
Intuition vs. instincts
Although you may hear the words intuition and instinct used interchangeably, there are some fundamental differences between the two.
Your intuition is a feeling of deep knowing.
It’s a psychological response to a certain situation and, over time, you can use it to guide your decisions in moments when you’re unsure of your next step.
The power of intuition is that it can be honed over time as you learn to trust it more and more. It can encourage you to take on a (not dangerous) risk or decision that your conscious mind would overanalyze and leave you making no moves. Due to the innate feeling of knowing, paired with trust, your intuition can become one of your greatest powers.
Curious about how to build your intuitive powers? Your intuition can be strengthed by life experiences, but more on that below.
You’ve probably heard the saying, “Trust your instincts,” and what that really means is trust what your bodies natural reaction is going to be.
Over hundreds of thousands of years, our human instincts have been developed and strengthened. If we’re being chased, our first instinct is to run (well, for most of us, at least!)
Instinct is a physiological response – a chain of events that occurs within your physical body without much forethought or experience. We’re born with instinct.
How I learned to trust my intuition
For as long as I can remember, I have been in touch with my intuition. There’s something important to distinguish here: I’ve always been in touch but not always listening.
Have you ever put on an outfit and immediately felt overwhelmed by a feeling of discomfort? It’s not that your pants are too tight or your shirt is see-through – everything fits great. Still, there’s just this feeling that you can’t quite pinpoint and you end up changing clothes.
In a simplified way, that’s your intuition. For me, it’s a feeling I get in my stomach and up through my throat.
I learned to trust my intuition over time. First, I had to get in touch with the physical feelings I felt when my intuition was speaking up (I cover this process in my Boundaries with Soul™ Digital Course.)
From there, I made a mental note of the decisions I made – whether it was with or against my intuition – and began to look for patterns in the outcomes. Overwhelmingly, over time, I could begin to see that my intuition was usually always right. Sometimes it wasn’t readily apparent but the truth always came out in the long run.
How do you know if your intuition is right?
Learning how to trust your intuition is a lifelong learning process. It can always be worked at, refined, tweaked, and analyzed.
So, where do you begin to learn if your intuition is right?
Start by looking at situations that went completely sideways. Did you trust your intuition beforehand? Did you have an internal dialogue and come to a decision? Work on analyzing situations after they’ve happened and see if your intuition was trying to speak up in any way.
Also, it’s important to look at whether or not your intuitive hits are pure or not. It’s possible they’re projections from past trauma or wishful thinking.
True intuitive hits are always correct.
What to do to improve intuition ?
Are you looking for more on how to build your intuitive powers? There are a few resources that might be helpful for you.
Books to add to your collection
The Magic of Intuition by Florence Scovel Shinn and Louise Hay
Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell
The Intuitive Way: The Definitive Guide to Increasing Your Awareness by Penney Peirce
Practice meditation to follow your intuition
Try using meditation to understand how to listen to your intuition. Meditation is a powerful practice when honing your intuition because it allows you to get in touch with your higher self – who you are at your core when all ego is stripped away.
Simply sitting still for ten to fifteen minutes a day will calm your mind and create the space for you to tap into your intuitive powers.
If you’re new to meditation, I highly recommend the Headspace app to guide you through a daily meditation practice.