Yesterday I was listening to a radio show. The radio host’s message, let’s call her Laura, is all about trusting your intuition. It’s in the words of the song on her show intro. And she repeatedly says how you should, ‘trust your intuition’ during the show.
So, when people call Laura wanting help with a decision, I am really surprised (and disappointed) that she proceeds to TELL people what to do – and make their decisions for them. Apparently when she said trust YOUR intuition, she really meant HER intuition.
But if you’re going to learn to trust your intuition, you don’t want someone saying to you – as Laura did – “Yes, take that job!” or “Yes, you should move back to the West Coast, go pack your bags now!”
OK, maybe we do.
It’s a huge relief and when someone else tells us what to do! It FEELS like it’s what we need. BUT, we’ve also been robbed of the opportunity to build our self-esteem and confidence by making that tough decision for ourselves…
What if the radio host had helped the caller by instead asking her to get really clear on what SHE thought?
Here’s a different way that ‘trust your intuition’ conversation could have gone:
- Caller: “I’m thinking about moving back to the West Coast, but I can’t decide.”
- Laura: “Wow, this sounds like it’s a tough decision for you.”
- Caller: “It is!”
- Laura: “I think you already know the answer, but you’re afraid.”
- Caller: “Hmmmmm”
- Laura: “Stop. Take a few deep breaths. Trust yourself. Listen to your gut. What’s the answer?”
- Caller: Silence
- Laura: Silence
- Caller: “Well, I want to go, but…”
- Laura: “No buts. What does your intution tell you?”
- Caller: (quietly) “Yes.”
- Laura: “Sorry, I didn’t hear you. Make me believe you!”
- Caller: “Yes!”
- Laura: “Awesome! How does that feel?”
- Caller: “Fantastic. And a little scary too!”
- Laura: “Well, of course it’s scary. You’re making a big change. But you know what? YOU can handle it!”
You see, we already know the answers. We just don’t want to deal with the consequences of our decision – maybe it will be risky, hard, painful, stressful, take effort, work, energy.
But when we let someone else make that decision FOR us, we rob ourselves of an opportunity to BELIEVE in ourselves, to build faith and trust in our decision-making ability. It also means that we can’t take full responsibility and learn what we were meant to learn from the situation – whether it goes well or not. If things go wrong we can say, “Well, Laura told me to do it!”. And if things go well – we won’t be AS proud of ourselves because WE didn’t make that final decision.
I know we would all love for someone else to give us the answers, especially to those tricky decisions in life. Shall I take that job/stay with that person/move back to the West Coast/drop that friend?
But when we step up, and make that decision FOR ourselves, that’s when we grow spiritually, when we become an adult – taking full responsibility for our feelings, decisions and our lives.
Yes, sometimes we need support to get to the bottom of – and – believe we can handle our fears around the decision. And sometimes the indecision is there for a good reason – it could be this is how our gut is telling us maybe we’re really not ready for that job or that move. Maybe we don’t have the strength (yet) to handle it if things do go wrong.
But the amazing thing is, YOU DO know the answers. You just need to TRUST your intuition and trust yourself.
So, just like no-one can do a workout for you, if you want to trust your intuition more, you need to give your intuition a workout – and build your INTUITION MUSCLE yourself!
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