“Intuition is a very powerful thing, more powerful than intellect, in my opinion.” ~ Steve Jobs
In a world of high tempo, information overload, and constant distraction it's too easy to overlook the obvious signs that don't always make sense, let alone consider the hidden messages and gut feelings to guide our actions. As Malcolm Gladwell puts it in Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking: “Insight is not a lightbulb that goes off inside our heads. It is a flickering candle that can easily be snuffed out.”
Great CEOs, like Jeff Bezos of Amazon, use intuition all the time. Speaking at the Economic Club of Washington, Bezos pointed out that his best decisions in business and in life had been made with heart, intuition, guts... not analysis. "If you can make a decision with analysis, you should do so. But it turns out in life that your most important decisions are always made with instinct and intuition, taste, heart."
Steve Jobs, former Head of Apple, embarked on a soul-searching journey to India in his early youth. It was during this voyage that he discovered the true power of stillness, reflection, mindfulness, and most importantly the power to access his inner voice, his intuition. At Commencement Speech at Stanford University, he said: "...you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something - your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life."
It is not surprising that he was a great advocate for intuitive leadership. Not only he insisted all of his tech-minded employees need to develop intuitive, mindful awareness, but also suggested other "Tech Giants", such as Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook) and Larry Page (Google) to embark on a similar journey to India where he had unlocked his intuitive potential.
For any aspiring person, intuition is a precious resource. It can help you to better understand the environment, collect the hidden cues, and ultimately find better solutions, and make better decisions.
How many times have you thought about someone and the next person that calls you is them? Some people experience not only nagging thoughts but also physical responses as signs that help them to turn into the right direction. Probably you know what we are talking about, but have you actually paid attention? Keep a journal to write down anything that could be your intuition telling you something. This way you will become more aware of this hidden power.
Through meditation, you will be able to calm down your thoughts and empty your mind, and most importantly, set the right conditions for you to hear the inner voice talking to you.
Another great way to nourish your intuition is visualization, a mental training method practiced by world-class athletes and entrepreneurs. Winning 22 medals at the Olympic games was not a coincidence for Michael Phelps as he had mentally rehearsed winning the races for months before the actual competition took place. Set a goal, and visualize the process that would lead you to it. Then go through the process in your mind, visualize the environment, visualize the obstacles and how you will overcome it, visualize how it will feel like once you reach the goal. This will help you feel more aware of the insights your intuition will provide when you are really doing it.
To be able to tap into your intuition and not just hear but actually understand the signs guiding you into the right direction you will need a clear idea of who you really are. Only in this way, your inner voice will become strong enough for you to hear it. As Steve Jobs puts it: "...follow your heart and intuition. They somehow know what you truly want to become."
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