Hint: Seek within
Many of us struggle to make a decision at some point in our lives. It’s amazing how much time we can spend making pro and con lists, getting advice from others, and reading books that tell us what to do.
We get so caught up in the facts, opinions, and fears that we are paralyzed and unable to make the decision that is in our best interest.
All along our intuition knows what is really best for us.
The power of intuition in making decisions
Intuition is the underlying feeling, the inner guide, the gut instinct, that we all have. Everyone has the power to tune into their intuition, but it can take some practice and patience.
When you are feeling unsure, overwhelmed, or confused, instead of seeking external advice, you can learn to seek the answers within.
Your intuition or inner guide already knows what to do, and is communicating to you, even though you might not be listening.
How can you learn to tune into your intuition and make decisions from a place of clarity and power? Here are 7 ways to get started:
1.Know yourself. A wise person once said, “You’ve got to stand for something or you’ll fall for anything.” Knowing yourself means knowing what you stand for: your values, your convictions, your deal-breakers. It’s commendable to be flexible and to go with the flow, but if you don’t know what you stand for, you can be pulled in any direction, and not necessarily the one that best serves you. To make decisions from a place of clarity and power, know what you value most in your life and commit to honoring those values.
2.Listen to your inner voice. It’s only natural that we reach out to others for advice when we’re confused. But ultimately, no one knows you better than you. Trust that you already have the answer. Listening to your intuition is often easier when you can quiet your mind. Allow yourself to spend some time alone in thoughtful reflection. Ask yourself questions as if you are an unattached observer. Where do you feel stuck? What are you unclear about? What are you scared of? These questions can help you gain information. Be willing and open to receive the answers that come to you.
3.Tune into your body. Our body experiences visceral reactions to our thoughts. These reactions can go unnoticed when we are in our heads trying to “figure things out.” When we tune into the body, we notice things we haven’t before. Try lying down in savasana, and take a few long slow deep breaths. Imagine making a choice, see yourself going down a specific path in your mind. Stay in that feeling for a while and notice what you observe in your body. Repeat the same process with a different scenario. Which option feels lighter/heavier? Which makes you feel tense/relaxed? What feels expansive/constrictive?
4.Trust yourself. Trust that your intuition has your own best interest at heart. There’s no need to focus on making the choice with your rational brain; instead, focus on what feels best. (Note: Sometimes what feels best doesn’t make sense to your logical mind, and your mind will try to argue it’s way into another choice. Put the logic aside for a moment.) Intuition doesn’t always seem rational, but the more we can tune into it, the more we can learn to follow the signs and trust the path. Be open to receiving the signs without judging. Trust that you can handle anything that comes up.
5.Be patient. If no answer comes to you clearly and immediately, simply ask, What can I do right now to serve my best interests and take care of myself? Allow things to unfold in their natural time. Sometimes the answer is not right in front of us. Your intuition may lead you to a completely different option that has not yet revealed itself. At the same time, realize that fear is a natural response to the unknown. Choose to make decisions from a place of love and self-belief rather than a place of fear.
6.Release control and need to be right. People have a tendency to focus on making the “right” choice and put a lot of pressure on themselves to do so. We assume that one choice will automatically lead us down a path of sunny skies and rainbows, and that the other path will ultimately lead to despair and depression. Let go of that pressure to make the right choice and commit to making the optimal choice at the time. Anytime we make a choice, we leave behind the road not taken. When you trust that the path you have chosen is the one that’s best for now, you can let go of the other choices and move forward.
7.Fully embrace your decision, without attaching to “forever.” Once you make a decision, embrace it fully and commit to it, without worrying about the future. Later, when you have new or different information, you can tune in again to see what your intuition is telling you. At that point, you may decide to stay the course, or to try a different direction. Our life is a path, and at each turn we have many choices. Don’t fall prey to believing this one choice will last forever. There are always opportunities for new choices.
Ultimately, tapping into your intuition is a practice. You can use this practice to get clarity in times of indecision or confusion. It’s not a Magic 8 ball that can tell you what to do and how your life will turn out. (Unfortunately, nothing will.) But the more in tune you are with your intuition, the more confident you can be that you are making decisions from a place of true clarity and personal power.
Are you still feeling stuck or unclear? Check out my free Making Powerful Decisions checklist.
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