Intuition: Just a gut feeling?
Did you know that our brain is processing 400 billion bits of information at any time, but we are only aware of about 2000? Our brain is continuously filtering information. You are seeing, hearing, feeling, and smelling far more information than you are aware of. Think about the room that you are in right now! Are you aware of the floor, the walls, the ceiling? Yet, they are there. The temperature of the room, smell, the sounds? It’s amazing how many sounds there are even in a quiet room if you stop to listen. Are you aware of your body, where your feet are? I could go on, but I think you get the point.
We notice what we pay attention to. If we paid attention to absolutely everything, we would probably go mad!
Every emotion has a physical reaction. Our body and our feelings are intrinsically linked. Just by thinking of something we can create a physical reaction. For example if you think of food that you really hate, you will have a reaction in your body. For example, you may screw up your face, your shoulders might go up, and you could even have a shiver going down your spine. We cannot help but communicate. We are continuously giving out clues about our internal thinking. Our eyes glance in a direction, our hands will often touch the part of the brain that we are using when we are thinking. Our face reveals our emotions by micro expression. Some people are oblivious to any expressions, if you consider people on the Autistic spectrum and yet other people can read every nuance. Our ability to pick up on information varies from person to person, just because you are not consciously aware of it, doesn’t mean that it hasn’t happened.
So there are billions of pieces of data that our senses are picking up that we are not aware of on a conscious level. At the same time, we are sending out unconscious signals all the time about our inner state.
Have you found that sometimes you know things, but can’t rationally say how or why? Gut feelings are when we are picking up information that we may not be aware of. It is knowing without being aware of knowing. We are thinking with our body rather than our head. If you get a strong feeling about something, that you cannot logically work out why, trust the feeling. You are probably picking up something subconsciously. The more you become an expert in a particular area, the stronger your intuition will be in that area. People successful in business tend to trust their instincts about people and projects.
Have you any stories about how you trusted your gut feeling, even though rationally it didn’t seem to be the right thing to do? I would love to hear them.
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