Intuition: 5 Steps for Inviting It
What is your relationship to intuition?
The process of developing intuition is about honing our receptivity to internal wisdom while navigating the spectrum of human experience. It is a lifelong process, but it can be cultivated with intentionality. If you don't yet feel a strong connection to your intuition, know that a desire to do so is the first step.
Intuition must be invited. It's not something we can teach formally because we each experience it in different ways. Some people experience intuition as a series of subtle physical sensations. Others relate to their intuition emotionally, while some describe it as an ineffable knowing that might be experienced visually or through imagination. For me, it's a swirl of all three depending on the quality of my attention and the situation.
Intuition is an important process in my life, but I also recognize that it's easy to become disconnected from it. When we are on the go, overly plugged in, or simply not carving out time alone, intuition can feel elusive.
Just remember that it's always with you, waiting to be invited and accessed.
Recently, the universe has been creating opportunities for me to have conversations and reminders about the important role intuition has played in my life, so I'm passing on five simple ways that help me stay connected to my own intuitive wisdom in hopes of helping you invite your own nuanced connection.
1) Slow down.
The pace of the outside world influences most of us live in a fast mental hum of activity. Intuition (much like inspiration) must be invited through an awareness that can only emerge when we are calm and geared toward self-compassion. Worry, rushing and other states of agitation are not conducive to welcoming your intuition.
Consciously slowing down takes effort and practice. Some of these easiest ways I do this for myself is through mindful eating, mindful walking, meditation, journaling, making art, and attention to my breath throughout the day. Slowing down is less about what you are doing, and more about finding an inner spaciousness in the moment, whatever that brings. There are infinite ways to slow down. The key is to find your entry points and practice using them daily.
2) Set intentions (and make space for them to unfold).
When I'm tuned in, intuition feels like a gentle nudge from inside. I'll usually feel this as an expansion between my shoulder blades or a comforting weightiness in my lower belly. Sometimes it feels like light butterflies in my solar plexus or even a hum in my sacrum. These are subtle sensations, but through practice I have come to recognize them as part of a conversation with a force larger than myself. They usually come after an affirmation or a prayer after I have done the work of taking care of myself mentally, physically or emotionally.
Understanding the chakras, or energy centers of the body, can be a powerful access point for inviting intuition. Even is this feels too woo woo for you, there are many schools of thought and cultural traditions that view energy in different ways. Explore them. What's important here is not what you believe or how you practice, but that you prioritize exploring a connection to yourself and spiritual connection to something larger than yourself.
3) Pray with readiness to receive.
Prayer doesn't have to be reserved for some white God type dude sitting on a cloud. That's not who I pray to. Prayer is about a willingness to surrender things out of our control and to ask for help from a force larger than ourselves. Asking for guidance and staying open to receiving a response is the embodiment of intuitive wisdom.
Sometimes my prayer is simply posing a question or an affirmation of how we'd like to feel, asking the universe for a sign when we are on the right path, and then paying attention.
4) Make time for creative play.
Let's expand our definition of creativity here. Yes, visual art is a powerful gateway to your subconscious and therefor cultivating intuition, but not everyone is drawn to the visual arts. Your creative call might be singing or dancing or cooking or gardening. Shit, even cleaning and going for walks can be creative activities because creativity (and intuition) lurk in spaces of incubation. Intentional creative practice becomes a conduit for deepening our attention to instances in which divine guidance is speaking through us or through the people, places and things around you.
5) Stay curious.
For me, intuition is often preceded by synchronicity and small serendipities that could easily be dismissed as chance if I weren't paying attention. Staying open takes curiosity.
The butterfly is a major symbol in my life because in my early twenties when I first made the commitment to start putting my health and dreams on the front burner, I asked God for a sign and then received a dream so powerful, I've never forgotten it. Throughout it was a butterfly that I've since had tattooed on my body as a daily reminder of intuition and the transformative power of surrender when committed to growth.
Intuition is so deeply engrained in how I live and work that I often forget that most operate from logic. My entire life today is a result of tuning into my intuition early in my twenties when I first committed to healing from rape and abortion. In fact, that commitment was the catalyst for later intuitive discoveries that led me to my now business. Anything is possible with creative commitment and a daily dose of courage.
Stay curious and committed to your growth. Make time to develop your intuition and watch with wonder as life slowly opens up.