Trust Your Intuition

Quote of the Week

“Intuition isn’t the enemy, but the ally, of reason.”
— John Kord Lagemann

Trust Your Intuition

by Phyllis Sisenwine

I recently visited a cousin who had an extremely successful career with a very large insurance company. When he retired he was a senior vice president. I asked him the secret of his success and he replied “intuitive decision making”. He would get up at 6AM and go running either outdoors or on a treadmill. He always ran alone and used that time to think He said jogging helps access intuition because it improves circulation. During his 45 minute run he would think through any issues or problems. He planned his strategies for that day only. Then he sat and relaxed with coffee and the newspaper to get ready for a successful day.

His morning ritual cleared his head and helped him focus on having a productive day. He trusted his intuition and made sure he had time to get in touch with it every morning.

Do you have confidence in your gut feelings? Do you pay attention to your thoughts and instincts? We sometimes get hunches that we can’t explain. It’s important to listen to those thoughts. Einstein called the theory of relativity “the happiest thought of my life.” What if he had ignored it? If you immerse yourself in details and are too analytical you can miss the inner wisdom you possess. Don’t over-analyze. When you’re faced with making a decision, pay attention to the feelings you have. John Teets past chairman of the Greyhound Corporation said, “What appears as a highly intuitive move at the time it is being made usually seems like common sense in retrospect.” The late business philosopher R. Buckminster Fuller called intuition “cosmic fishing”, but warned, “Once you feel a nibble, you’ve got to hook the fish.” Too many people, he said, “get a hunch and forget about it.”

What was the last hunch you got? Did you pay attention to it? Did you take action? Intuition is your subconscious guiding you. Successful leaders must rely on more than logic. They must combine intuition and judgment.

You can develop your intuitive decision making powers like you develop any muscle– exercise. Clear the mental clutter and eliminate noise so that you can create a stillness that allows you to hear your intuitive voice. Often, relaxing and letting the mind wander helps you to find the answer. If you get a hunch, don’t tune it out. Don’t let the logical part of your brain talk you out of a sudden intuitive feeling. Trust your inklings. Keep using your intuition and you will become more confident in following your hunches. It will help you access your decision-making powers.

My successful cousin said he was able to read people and read situations by trusting his intuition. He made decisions with 60 to 70 percent of the facts and then he followed his intuition. He would walk around his offices and talk to the employees and feel the pulse. He would ask questions and get the information he needed to make decisions.

What can you do to exercise your intuitive muscle? There are lots of ways to access your own intuition. Find the way that works for you and use it.

Copyright 2008, All Rights Reserved. Phyllis Sisenwine, Master Certified Coach, can be reached at

Coaching Call to Action

Sometimes we call our intuition just that “intuition” and sometimes we call it a hunch or a gut feeling. Whatever you name it, accessing it requires taking time to listen to the voice in our head, the images we see or that part of our body that “knows”. This week take some time each day to quiet yourself, ask a question, and listen.