How To Use Your Intuition

Jun 15, 2015

How to Use Your Intuition |

Have you ever wondered if you’re headed in the right direction…as you’re exploring a new city, or in your life? Have you ever wished there was some kind of guiding force that would just tell you if what you were doing was right or wrong?

As it turns out, you do have this internal barometer. It’s called your intuition.

Most of us have gotten quite good at ignoring our intuition. We live in a culture where self-doubt is rampant, and so having any sense of assuredness about our path or what to do in a challenging situation is unusual; we Google the information we need, and use that as a way to squelch the gut instincts that might be roaring inside of us. In fact, there are countless ways in which we are Googling ourselves away from being able to listen deeply to our hearts, our minds and our bodies.

But that’s a story for another day.

Intuition can be a powerful thing. If you’re willing to be vulnerable enough to give over your preconceived notions about how things should go in order to trust and follow the direction of your instincts, you could find yourself in situations you never dreamed of. Many people credit the most powerful and positive changes to their lives with their ability to trust their gut instincts.

That can seem pretty overwhelming, so let’s think small. Using, trusting and following your instincts or intuition is something that you need to practice, and thankfully, it’s something that you can do nearly every single minute of every single day.

Think about all the times you’ve said “something told me….” Something told me that I wanted to eat oatmeal for breakfast instead of my usual bowl of cereal (you’re using your intuition to hear what your body needs). Something told me they’d be great together (you’re using your instincts to help people fall in love!). Something told me not to drive to work that way today (you’re using your intuition to guide you away from traffic…or an accident that you could have been involved in). Try tapping into those moments, when something is telling you what to do, and see what happens when you listen and follow those subconscious instructions.

It helps, but is not necessary, when you’re doing this, to have an active daily meditation practice. Being able to still your mind of clutter (did I take out the garbage? I think so? Wait, did I?) can help you hear the more important calls to action that may be trying to get your attention.

Once you’ve gotten practice using intuition in your everyday life, you’re ready to start playing. Throw yourself into scenarios where your intuition is the main driver of the events that play out. This could be as simple as heading out on a road trip with no map and no plans. Just follow your instincts. I’m firmly of the belief that you’ll see and do whatever you most need in your life right now.

These are the small ways that you can start trusting your gut instinct. When you practice regularly, you will start to find yourself trusting your instincts about bigger and more important aspects of your life. To me, there’s no better way to feel assured that you’re following the right path – the one that you most need to follow in your life right now – than by knowing that you’ve trusted your instincts to get you there.

Do you have a strong sense of intuition?  Do you actively try to cultivate it?

The Becoming Podcast has been on a short hiatus while I focus on writing my book, but oh what a comeback episode I have for you!

This month, I spoke to Toko-pa Turner, who many of you may know as the unofficial patron saint of many of my circles and gatherings because of the sheer number of times I’ve quoted from the wisdom of her book, Belonging.

Toko-pa is a Canadian author, teacher, and dreamworker. Blending the mystical teachings of Sufism in which she was raised with a Jungian approach to dreams, she founded The Dream School in 2001, from which thousands of students have graduated. She is the author of the award-winning book, Belonging: Remembering Ourselves Home, which explores the themes of exile and belonging through the lens of dreams, mythology, and nature. This book has resonated for readers worldwide, and has been translated into 10 different languages so far. Her work focuses on the relationship between psyche and nature, and how to follow our inner wisdom to meet with the social, psychological, and ecological challenges of our time.

Here’s some of what Toko-pa and I talk about in this episode:

> The dream that changed Toko-pa’s life, causing her to question her career and, ultimately, her identity

> How we can court our dreams to support us during times of radical transformation – and the reasons so many of us have a hard time remembering and working with what shows up in our dreamscape

> Toko-pa’s perspective on the message of Belonging after the divisiveness our society has experienced in the years since it was published

> What happened for both Toko-pa and I when we fell out of belonging from the ideologies of the “wellness world”

> How to build community when you’re under-resourced

> “The Big Lie” when it comes to belonging, and how we can reclaim a sense of belonging to the greater family of things, as Mary Oliver so famously wrote

Listen to the episode on iTunes


Show Notes

Toko-pa’s Website

Belonging:  Remembering Ourselves Home, Toko-pa’s book

The David Abram video about animism mentioned in the interview

Toko-pa’s self-guided program, Dream Drops

Companion, the program that accompanies Belonging


Also, while you’re at it, if you enjoy The Becoming Podcast, I would be so grateful if you would rate and review, and even subscribe to it on iTunes.  That goes a long way to helping more and more people find and benefit from hearing these interviews!  Thank you so much!