“From the time we are born there is a wildish urge within us that desires our souls lead our lives, for the ego can only understand just so much.”
– Clarissa Pinkola Estes
Cultivating your inner wisdom is a key to living a rich and meaningful life. By learning to fine-tune intuitive awareness we can be in ever-increasing contact with the source of our being and have our daily decisions and life choices reflect the truth of who we are.
Intuition can assist in everything from pointing you to the right career path to helping you clarify your values and life purpose. As author and physicist Gary Zukav says, “Intuition is a walkie-talkie between the personality and the soul.” If we let intuition inform our choices and actions, we develop a rooted trust in our own core, less able to be pulled off center by the ever-changing conditions around us. We stop looking to externals to define us and come to rely on our own wisdom and authority. Gifts of clarity, imagination, confidence and connectedness reveal themselves to us.
It is quite easy to develop intuition even if it’s been long-repressed. And we don’t have to wait for hunches or spontaneous insights. As our essential nature, intuition is always present. It doesn’t come and go; we do. Inner wisdom is a readily available aspect of awareness, residing close to the surface of the conscious mind.
If you’d like to develop ongoing communication with this knowing, here are some guidelines:
We need to value intuition.
The influence of many years of ‘reason training’ doesn’t shift easily. Internal and external messages still tell us this work is frivolous, even crazy. We may feel that developing intuition is a waste of time, that we’ll be neglecting the really important matters of our lives if we tend to our inner world. Many believe that intuitive knowledge is not trustworthy because it can’t easily be measured. If we can let go of this negativity and take a stand for a choice that may not be popular, we’ll be one step closer to aligning with our souls.
An ongoing commitment is important.
We need to choose this again and again because the pulls are strong to return to habitual patterns. Like the development of any skill or innate gift, the choice to strengthen your connection to intuition requires intention, commitment and persistence.
Expecting quick results or progression that is smooth and without difficulties will be frustrating, at best. There are times when it seems like our souls are asleep at the wheel, when we can’t easily find our intuitive connection. Perhaps we’re ill or out-of-sorts. Other times, we surf through our days; everything clicks into place, what we need shows up right when we need it. We’re in ‘the zone.’ Then we’re not. Perhaps we don’t always need to be in a ‘flow’ state.
Include activities in your life that help you unhook from the thinking mind.
Intuition abides in the spaces between and beneath thoughts. It springs from the silence. Spend time in nature, meditate, write, paint or dance, play with children and animals, explore mind/body practices like yoga or tai chi. Come to deeply know that you have thoughts, but you are not your thoughts.
Practice listening to intuition many times a day.
Pause, take a couple of deep breaths and attend to inner cues, ask questions, listen for whispers and Aha’s, notice physical sensations, like warmth or relaxation when, for example, you’re in an environment that’s pleasing to you or you’re with people that you like. Notice your experience when you’re in a situation that doesn’t ‘feel right.’ How do you know that? What do you know? Practice. Practice. Practice. Remember: ‘What you feed, grows.’