Do you ever wake up and think: "How will I complete all the tasks on my to-do list?! It’s impossible!"
I know I have mornings like that.
But it’s more than possible. If you employ a little help from your intuition - it’s easy-peasy.
What is intuition?
It’s an inner voice, the opposite of the inner critic. I don’t need to tell you what an inner critic is, right? Because we all met him or her.
But an intuition? A gentle, loving voice?
"No, not me! I'm a rational human being. I don't follow intuition."
Because for some reason, unlike inner critic, intuition is thought to be a bit woo-woo, wouldn't you agree?
It’s ironic how we always happily accept anything negative and then question everything positive.
But just like the inner critic, our good helper is also there. We need to learn to hear its voice first and then follow its advice to get better and better and dodge the blows that life throws at us.
Telling the difference between intuition and inner critic
How do you tell that the quiet voice you hear inside is your intuition, not your inner critic, pretending to be good and leading you astray?
Well, the voice of your intuition will never judge or hurt you.
Your intuition is there with the only purpose: to help you. And someone who wants to help will not criticise you. It will use different tactics that have love and tender care at the heart of it all.
So if you wake up and hear: "Gosh, it took you forever to get out of bed! Now you need to catch up on all your tasks!" - that’s not a voice of your intuition. That’s your inner critic. Ignore it.
But if you wake up and hear: “It’s ok, there are other ways to make it happen. Take your time. We’ll get there.” - That’s it. It’s kind and gentle and understanding, like a loving parent.
Ok, now we’ve established what the voice of intuition is and is not. Let's see how we can ask intuition to help us with personal development.
How can we use intuition for personal development?
The thing with personal development is that it requires a bit of planning (knowing where you want to go and why) and consistency. And unless you are super organised, it will inevitably feel like a chore. Your whole body will resist planning and following through on your grand plan. It will shout: “It’s not fair! I want to play some more!”
1. Use your intuition to know when to work and when to play
Slow down whenever you start getting that restless, fidgety feeling like you want to do something else instead of the task at hand. Breathe in and out a few times. Close your eyes. Imagine what you’d rather be doing now. Go as crazy as you wish. Would you rather be jet skiing? Why not. Eating sticky toffee pudding? Of course! It’s your fantasy; you are the boss. Now that you have all the silly wishes out of your system ask yourself if you should return to work or whether you should rest for a bit longer.
The recommendation from your intuition will be soft and gentle, like a long-forgotten favourite song.
It won’t feel pushy, and it won’t rush you to make a decision. It won’t shout at you: “What do you think? I am exhausted! Rest, of course!”
No, your intuition is part of your subconscious, and it knows you better than you know yourself merely because your brain controls your rational part. And as the myth goes, humans really only use about 10% of their brain power. Even though it's only a myth, we, humans, can only remember, comprehend and analyse as much as we can. But it does not mean the information that is not immediately accessible is gone forever. No, it's still there, we just don't need to access it. But what that means, all the information, memories, insights we are not actively using - is being accessed by our subconscious. Hence, your intuition sometimes knows more than you do.
It might say: "You are enjoying this. Why not write another paragraph?"
2. Use your intuition to decide whether to take something on or not
Just like knowing when you need to rest and when you need to continue working, your intuition could help you decide whether to take something on or not.
Imagine you’ve been offered a new job. You are excited, yippee!
Your inner critic is screaming: “You are not good enough! Who are you fooling? A day in, and they’ll realise how rubbish you are!”
Inner critics are so mean, aren’t they? But starting a new job is always stressful because it’s a change. Even if you need one or are more than ready, doubt and anxieties will still show their ugly faces.
But we need to disable our inner critic and our inner celebrator. Because they are loud, neither of them will be able to tell if there is anything we have missed or if there is anything we need to pay extra attention to. There might be a small print saying: long hours expected. You have seen it but forgotten, especially now that you are excited. And you intuition is trying to get through to you but it cannot, too much noise.
Do the usual calming down exercise, breathe in and out a few times.
Or try this visualisation meditation:
Imagine you are sitting by the lake. Look at its water. A stone has been thrown in and it creates multiple ripples. Follow them, while breathing in and out. Look at the water for as long as you need to. Once you have calmed down, ask yourself a question. :"Is there anything I should double check before accepting it?"
And wait for the answer. As usual, it should not be loud or shouty, or angry, or arrogant. It should be quiet and calm, like the voice of the wisest person you’ve ever met. Or Yoda, or Buddha. It might say, “what was is about the hours? Check the small print.” It might say: “Talk about your worries with your friend X.”
Final Thoughts on Useful Tips on Applying Your Intuition to Help with Personal Development
Intuition is not woo-woo and it's not for people who are not great at being rational and critical. No, intuition is something we all posses. It's something within us that somehow knows what's good for us. It knows because we cannot know and understand everything. We are humans. But we have this fantastic helper, this ruler of our subconscious who knows things we don't know. It's really only our inner voice. But unlike inner critic, this voice is full of love and compassion. It's there to help us. So learn to communicate with it and you will have the best aid on your path of continuous personal development.