Throughout the plant and animal kingdom there is wisdom beyond conscious thought that allows all species to achieve their maximum potential.
Gut feeling, inner voice, intuition: Whatever you choose to call it, we have all experienced it. At times, our bodies tell us what is right (or wrong) for us, without our brains fully understanding why.
I call this “Inner Wisdom,” and it is arguably your greatest human faculty. Your Inner Wisdom serves to protect you, to keep your dreams alive, to prevent you from compromising on what matters to you, and to drive you toward happiness.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could access your Inner Wisdom at will? You can.
The main thing to know about accessing your Inner Wisdom is that you have to get your rational, thinking mind out of the way. Our rational, thinking minds can pick up habits of thinking and beliefs that do not serve us. Our thinking minds can be infested with insecurities and false premises that will lead us astray. But, our Inner Wisdom knows our value and believes we deserve to get our needs met, even when our conscious minds have self-destructive thinking. Our Inner Wisdom watches when our minds go down a rabbit hole, and our Inner Wisdom knows that just because we think it, does not mean it is true.
Several activities can help you intentionally circumvent your thinking mind and tap into your Inner Wisdom. Here are four of them:
Ask and listen
You might be amazed at how much you can learn about yourself by just closing your eyes, taking a few deep, cleansing breaths, asking your Inner Wisdom a question, and listening for the answer.
The most powerful question is always: What do I need to feel better... that is within my control?
Take three minutes to try "asking and listening" and being curious about what your Inner Wisdom reveals about what you need to feel better.
One way to keep your rational, thinking mind out of the way is to ask yourself a question and make yourself say the first thing that comes to mind. Force yourself to answer quickly. Say out loud or write down your first thought, the one that comes to you before you start overthinking and editing yourself. Your first answer will be the most helpful in revealing the voice of your Inner Wisdom, because it is the one that has not been interrupted or redirected by your rational mind.
Stream-of-consciousness or freeform writing
One of the best ways to hear what your Inner Wisdom has to say is to put pen to paper and let it flow without thinking, pausing, or editing yourself. This is not the same thing as journaling, which often ends up being a venting session. If the goal is to hear your Inner Wisdom, write from the perspective of your Inner Wisdom. This might feel weird at first, but begin, and your Inner Wisdom will come.
Ask your Inner Wisdom a question , and then allow your pen to be the voice of your Inner Wisdom.
Even if you think you are a “lousy artist,” drawing is a powerful way to circumvent your thinking mind and get a new perspective on yourself and your situation.
Care to try it? Ask your Inner Wisdom a question and then draw the answer. Don't worry about how "good" the drawing is. No one has to see it but you. The point is that using images instead of words accesses a different part of the brain that allows your Inner Wisdom to override your thoughts. Just as with free association and freeform writing, don't think, just put pen to paper and be curious about what is revealed. Have fun with it.
Another powerful drawing exercise is to draw your body. Because our bodies are connected to our minds, you can learn a lot about yourself and what you can do to improve your life by tuning into what your body has to tell you. Ask your Inner Wisdom what you need to know about your body and let your pen show you with images.
Your Inner Wisdom is always giving your information, but you have to tune in to hear it. I read a quote online that sums it up nicely:
“Our inner wisdom is persistent, but quiet. It will always whisper, but it will never stop knocking at your door.” Vironika Tugaleva