Thought Leaders//

Following Your Intuition Can Transform Your Decision-Making and Your Life

How tuning into your body’s intuition can help you make informed decisions and change your life in the process.

Getty Images
Getty Images

What if I told you that we all have a powerful internal guidance system that will never steer us wrong?

It’s more powerful than any technology that’s on the market today and we were all born with it; we simply have to learn how to use it.

I’m talking about your intuition — your gut feeling, your inner knowing, or however else you may refer to it. Intuition is one of those words that people get hung up on; “following your intuition” can sound mysterious or difficult to the uninitiated. But listening to your intuition really just means tuning in to your physical body. Our minds can play tricks on us, but our bodies don’t lie and they’re incredibly perceptive to the world around us.

Think of tuning into your body’s intuition as a way to help you make informed decisions, both big and small, from what to eat for lunch to if you should quit your job or not. We often hear people say things like “This job/this relationship is killing me” or “I have a really good feeling about this.” If we tune in to these phrases they give us clues as to how we’re feeling. Your body can help you identify the things you should move towards (a.k.a. the things that give you energy) as well as the things you should drop or steer away from (a.k.a. the things that drain you!) through resonance and dissonance. 

These are terms you may have heard in physics class, but it’s probably been a while, so let’s review: Resonance is when two energy waves that are traveling at the same speed and the same wavelength get together and they produce a wave that’s bigger than both waves combined — think 1 + 1 = 3. It’s also what people call flow! Resonance can show up in our lives as creativity flowing freely, having an endless supply of energy and feeling fully connected and lit up. An example is that friend that lights you up. You could talk for hours on end; you seek each other out at gatherings and get excited to see each other. You recognize that you have more energy around them than you do alone.

Dissonance is when you two energy waves that are not the same wavelength or speed combine to create less energy together than they had separately. Essentially, they cancel each other out. Dissonance is also known as being in struggle. It can show up in our lives as being in our heads, blaming others, being low on energy, feeling like life is against us, or being in protection mode as opposed to being open and present. One example could be that colleague who always comes to you to complain and stoke workplace drama. You may find you walk away from those conversations feeling zapped of energy.

And now that you understand how this all works, it seems absurd that you would even consider allowing dissonance in your life, right? Why would you want to be in a situation that takes away your energy? We often keep dissonance in our lives because of people-pleasing tendencies or fear. So we sit at dinner with the friend that always has drama in their life and drags us down because we want them to like us, or we tolerate a working environment that drains us because we’re afraid to leave. In the moment, avoiding fear or pain seems to be a fair trade for our precious life force energy — and that’s because most of us haven’t been taught to value our energy. But think about it: We can always make more money, but we only have so much energy. Once you realize that your energy is the most precious resource you have and start treating it that way, curating your life for resonance and dissonance will seem only natural.

I’m no scientist, but once I learned about resonance and dissonance I’ve experimented with it for the past five years in a real-life experiment with real money (sometimes with millions of dollars on the line) and real events — a.k.a. my life! — and I can say from experience that when we surround ourselves with things that light us up, it’s like we have an infinite well of energy to draw from.

One thing I hear from people often is, “But I don’t know what’s resonant with me!” If you have a lot of chaos in your life that is draining you, it can be hard to identify the things that feel good. My suggestion is to start identifying dissonance and removing it from your life. You may not know what’s resonant yet, but you can definitely identify what’s dragging you down. Start looking at how various tasks, people and places make you feel. Do you feel drained or like a zombie after meeting about a particular project, having lunch with a certain friend or talking to a family member on the phone? (A note: Following resonance definitely doesn’t mean you still don’t work hard. When a project is resonant, you can still be putting a lot of effort forth but doing it in a more enjoyable state; at the end of the day you may feel tired but accomplished, rather than zapped.)

Removing dissonance at work could be as simple as communicating with your manager or boss: “When I work on this project I feel drained and it’s not efficient for me. I’m interested in conserving company resources and I feel I could be more effective if I worked on a project that was better suited to my skills and interests.” It’s in everyone’s best interest that you go toward the things that light you up!

Remember: You are born with amazing technology inside you that computers can never emulate. It’s called intuition, gut feelings and a life force energy detection system — and THAT is the most advanced system in the world. How you feel REALLY matters! Paying attention to these feelings is the most important thing you can do for your evolution. This is your inborn, natural superpower. Once you’re tuned in to these feelings and learn to follow them in every aspect of your life, your internal guidance system will lead you to a rich life full of happiness, health and vibrancy.

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