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August 19, 2019
Word of the Week: Intuition
“You never finish anything that you start”
“You are all over the place”
“You are so scattered”
“You need to be more consistent”
“You didn’t even give that a try”
These are all things I’ve been told by loved ones, past managers, and business coaches when it comes to my work. The sad part is I used to believe them. I used to believe there was something wrong with me because my approach to life was so different from theirs. Instead of standing my ground, I internalized three dominant stories:
These narratives ruled my life until I learned that what others see as “flakey” is actually my intuition. When an opportunity feels exciting, I go for it. When a project no longer feels aligned, I ditch it. When I feel bored in a job, I change it. When I outgrow a city, I move. It didn’t occur to me that what made me so “all over the place” was actually a gift. It’s what has allowed me to:
It’s not that I don’t work hard, put in the hours, or shy away from commitment. It’s that when something doesn’t feel aligned, I don’t spend a lot of time trying to convince myself to stick it out. I don’t believe in just doing something just because you said you were going to do something.
Sure, sometimes it feels embarrassing. Like when I was super excited about my yoga teacher training and then decided I didn’t really want to teach yoga. Or when I thought I wanted to get my PhD and then couldn’t stomach working all day in a lab. Or when I got certified as a life coach and then decided life coaching wasn’t my calling. Or when I was working at a hot Silicon Valley startup and then decided there weren’t enough free hoodies in the world that could keep me there. As soon as I ask myself, “What are you trying to prove?,” it becomes pretty clear what I want to do vs. what I think I am “supposed” to do. I have found that a momentary blow to the ego is a thousand times better than staying in jobs, relationships, or situations that don’t bring me joy.
I’ll often hear: “But Elizabeth, isn’t it good to be challenged? I’m sure I’m learning an important lesson.” Yes, this is true! However, you will be challenged and learn important lessons in literally anything you do. You don’t have to try to force something to work just to learn the lesson. As Oprah says, “Difficulties come when you don’t pay attention to life’s whisper. Life always whispers to you first, but if you ignore the whisper, sooner or later you’ll get a scream.” The practice is being able to notice the whispers and remind yourself that everything is quietly (or loudly 🤣) nudging you in the right direction.
Following your intuition doesn’t always feel very good, especially when people question your decisions or say what you fear most to your face. Stay strong. Find your center. And trust that things don’t have to make sense to be true.
Ask Yourself: Do you hear any soul whispers in your life right now? What do you think these whispers are trying to tell you? How can you take steps to honor these whispers before they turn into screams?
Weekly Mantra: I know what’s best for me