There is one major thing I have learned in my 40+ years, and that is that my intuition has never failed me. Have I failed my intuition? Absolutely. Countless times. I have ignored it, brushed it off and for many years, failed to recognize what it was telling me. I always learned, often the hard way, that my intuition was and never is wrong.
The signs are often very subtle. When meeting a new person, it could be something as simple as the movement of a wrinkle on the side of their mouth or a bounce of the brow that rubs me just ever so slightly wrong. It could also be less subtle, such as a few unsettling words that play over and over again in my head.
In my younger years, I would write these slight feelings off as simple overthinking and judgment. I would think that I was being unreasonable and that I could simply look past or live with whatever it was that gave me this very minor feeling of unease. With experience, I learned that these little things often grow from a slight feeling into something much bigger; The root and truth of this unease can come to light hours, months and even years later.
There are other more blatant and physical examples of intuition in action. When I was 17, my then boyfriend drove a gorgeous 1971 Nova which I drove exactly zero times. When leaving his house one afternoon, I walked to the driver’s seat of the car, sat down, suddenly realized what I was doing and promptly slid over to the passenger seat. He got in and backed out of the driveway into a car that was parked on the other side of the street.
The car was typically not there, so he simply relied on his muscle memory to pull out of the driveway the same way he always did. Had I backed out that car, I would have not backed into the car across the street because it was all unfamiliar to me and I would have noticed it. Such a small thing, but one that still sticks out in my mind today. Had I followed my intuition at that moment, the accident could have been prevented. There are many of these small occurrences in my life.
Let’s just say now, when I inadvertently walk to the driver’s side of a friend’s car, which I typically don’t drive, I insist on driving. The story usually convinces them.
The most difficult part of these “life lesson journeys” is that it often seems to contradict the desires of the heart.
When the heart is set on something, whether it be a new relationship, a career move, a relocation or even a large purchase, it is very hard to recognize or give any authority to that “nagging feeling” that is hanging there in the back of the mind. It is too easy to look past the very minor doubts that come along when making big decisions, and I have personally had to endure many setbacks and “do-overs” as a result of ignoring these warning signs.
On the flipside of that, I view every one of these setbacks as valuable. These are lessons that have brought me much closer to my intuition; to recognize it, trust it and understand that deep down, it is only working to keep me on a path of greater happiness and success.
In my mid-30’s, I began to trust it. Of course, only when I recognized it. I still fail at this and believe I always will. It is a constant journey and one I continue to work at.
When I began to trust it, I found that my life was beginning to follow a much smoother path. My career improved, my financial situation improved and my personal relationships improved. I started trusting my intuition, which has led me to turning down jobs I may have normally jumped at, turning down relocation opportunities, avoiding large purchases that didn’t sit right and removing toxic people from my life.
This doesn’t mean my decisions still don’t fail me from time to time, but I am seeing a significant reduction in these failures, which I am considering a win at this point in my life.