The shadow side of intuition

shadow side of intuitionI talk a lot about getting to know and listening to your intuition.  When you’re living life intentionally, it’s really important to listen to your intuition, that gut feeling, whether it’s yelling loudly in your ear or whispering quietly in an attempt to get your attention.

It’s that intuitive voice that helps to guide and protect you on your life journey.  That gentle tug at your awareness, that when left unheeded always ends up with you saying “I should have listened to that gut feeling”.  Or a full-body sensation (whether it’s a full-body YES or a full-body NO) that leaves you absolutely certain about what your next step should be.

Learn to listen to it. Learn to honor it, even when it doesn’t always make logical, rational sense.

But be aware of what I think of as the shadow side of intuition. Because sometimes intuition becomes a trap.  An excuse that holds you back from truly living your life.

It’s not actually your intuition that is the trap.  She’s spot on, 100% of the time.  It’s the other things that get labeled as intuition that are the problem.

What I am talking about is when you catch yourself saying things like:

  • This is just too hard.  If it was meant to be, it would be effortless, so I’m going to listen to my intuition and not do it.
  • Every time I think about doing it, I find myself falling asleep.  Clearly my body is trying to tell me something, so I’m not going to do it.
  • Even though I’m inspired and passionate about the idea, every time I begin to take action, I feel this resistance inside of me.  I’m going to listen to my intuition and not do it.

Sound familiar?

While it is possible that these are intuitive signals, odds are that they aren’t.  And it’s really important to take a second listen and ask yourself if this is truly your intuition guiding you, or if it’s something else.

What else can it be?

Ego. Fear of failure. Fear of success.  Fear of the unknown. Conscious or sub-conscious beliefs that are in opposition to what you are creating for yourself.  Just to name a few.

That’s not your intuition speaking.  In fact, it’s just the opposite.

So, what’s a girl to do?

Get quiet and listen.  I mean really listen to what is going on.  You might want to pull out a journal to help with this self-exploration.  What is the resistance you are experiencing really about?  Here are some questions to get you started:

  • What am I learning at this moment? What am I learning about the situation? What am I learning about myself?
  • What is the gift in this situation? What is the gift if I do what I am intending? What is the gift if I don’t?
  • What is my biggest fear about this situation? What happens if that fear becomes reality?
  • What is my biggest hope? What happens if that hope becomes reality?
  • Is there a better way to do this?  What are 10 ways I can take this action?  Which one makes the most sense? Is the resistance just about the way in which I was intending to do this?

As you work your way through these questions, it’s likely that you will discover something about the situation, about your intended actions, or about the possible outcomes, that will help you to shift out of resistance. Will help you to hear your intuition clearly, beyond the other voices that are clamoring for attention.

When you can see, feel or hear your self clearly, the best course of action will be clear too.  Move forward from that place which is most true. It may not always be easy to overcome the resistance, but it will be easier now that you have a sense of what it is that is holding you back. And sometimes, the greatest gift is in overcoming the resistance and claiming more of your whole self and the life you deserve to live.

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Rachel is a coach supporting women to rediscover who they are beyond the *shoulds* of life. To create and live life on purpose.

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