“You have to practice intuition, you have to learn to trust the small voice inside of you that tells you how to decide.” Ingrid Bergman
I strongly believe that life is both easier, richer, more meaningful and much more interesting when you follow your intuition.
For me, a big part of getting to understand my intuition has been to meditate, create and then reflect upon my learning.
It is like learning any new skill, it needs time, practice and awareness – let me give you a couple of examples.
Start listening to our intuition
The other day, I spoke to a friend who reflected with a smile on how long it takes us to start listening to our intuition. She recollected a day when, after spilling coffee on her favourite pants, she was in a hurry to put them in the washer. Despite feeling an urge to look through the pockets, she didn’t. Instead she proceeded to wash her electrical cigarette, disregarding her helpful gut-feeling.
The day before I had been packing for an overseas move, and as I was packing winter jackets I was similarly hit by a thought that I should look through the pockets. In the first pocket lay the extra car key for the car that was to be delivered to its owner next week.
I shrugged just imagining how it would have been to go through all the boxes to find it, or to find it after 3 months in a container.
We get these quick intuitive thoughts all the time, but in stress, they pass so quickly and are easily ignored. If we instead learn to stop for a few seconds and listen, we can flow through life.
Our intuitive GPS is constantly with us and it needs NO updated app! But, it does require us to update our ability to listen.
Features of intuition
Intuition is instant messaging –
Intuition is incredibly quick. If someone asks me for something that they have misplaced I can usually see a color or a material that the object is in.
This only happens If I don’t start to think, the moment I start to think I can’t see. Try this the next time you are searching for something. Go with the very first indication you get, even if it has no logic.
Intuition listens through emotion, energy and tone –
Like when you get a call from your best friend to tell you that she/he has lost their job, you would know in their “Hello” that something is off.
When a good friend is being polite in describing what they thought about your new partner, you may still sense their reservations.
If you meet someone for the first time and you can’t explain why you like or dislike this person.
The inexplicable emotion of walking into a house where you just feel at home.
I am sure that you can all relate to some of this. We all get these indicators daily, but we don’t always tune in and listen.
It starts like a whisper but has no problem shouting if that is what it takes, nor does it mind repeating itself.
An intuitive impulse starts like a whisper
An intuitive impulse starts like a whisper and if we pick it up, all is well. When we don’t, we will get the message again and again louder and louder until we hear it and change it.
I was thinking about a mayor life change and was writing lists and trying to figure what the best decision could be. During my morning intuitive painting I heard the words ‘Your voice’ repeated over and over. And then, the words “if you don’t make a decision, someone else will”. I remember the exact feeling in my body in that moment – I felt extremely powerful at my core, as if nothing could or would shake me. The experience made me feel that not being in the driver’s seat of your own life can be devastating, so I made a decision in that moment. It felt right in my stomach, heart and through the spine.
Again, we are all human. We all have days when stress takes hold of us. When we are working on autopilot or when we are just going through the motions. But if we on those days can learn to take a break, then maybe we can practice turning back to ourselves, and tune back to our intuitive GPS.
I look upon myself practicing intuition as a beginner. I study my intuition to get to know it. I write down and reflect on what I learn to be able to see the patterns, to recognize them as early as possible. This is a learning process that takes time, practice and inquiry just as learning a new language. First, you need to understand the basic foundation, the grammar, the vocabulary and you slowly start to be able to put together a few phrases.
The masters that have learned to listen
When you listen to Oprah you understand that she has learned and practiced to listen to the whispers from her intuition, to do the next right thing. After that, you would do the next right thing, and keep focusing in each new decision. Every decision is made by tuning in to her intuition – by listening to herself.
Many other famous people such as Steve Jobs, Ingemar Bergman, Richard Branson and Peter Stordalen use their intuition in their decision making.
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other peoples thinking. Don’t let the noise of others opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow you heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” Steve Jobs at a speech at Stanford
How do we distinguish intuition?
Intuition is instant. It does not feel fear or anxiety – it feels right in your stomach.
The easiest way to block it out is stress.
In certain areas of my life intuition feels closer, and easier to connect to. For me, the practice of creative meditation is my window to explore my intuitive world. It is easier for me to connect to my intuitive GPS if I meditate, create and reflect.
That doesn’t mean that intuitive messages fail to reach me in other situations, but rather that meditation increases my ability to listen.
Explore, reflect on, and create a routine that brings your intuition within reach of your everyday decisions. Let it take time. And most importantly, let yourself listen when it calls.
Good luck exploring your Intuitive GPS
Ingela Johansson is the founder of Zenart an online course concept for creative mindfulness.
That combines meditation, creativity and reflection with her experiences from working with artists and students in several parts of the world.
She is also an international artist and has had workshops and exhibitions in Singapore, Bali, China, Australia, Norway, Sweden, France, Malaysia and the UK.
Ingela is originally from Sweden and is passionate about creative meditation and being close to nature.