How to listen to your intuition, especially when it’s saying “no”

Intuition is something beautiful. It’s a mix of intrinsic knowledge, past experiences, and picking up on the energies that are all...

Intuition is something beautiful. It’s a mix of intrinsic knowledge, past experiences, and picking up on the energies that are all around us. And I’m not saying this in a woo woo way. I mean situations like when a particular person enters a room, and the entire room is lit up. Or, quite to the contrary, when a person enters the party, and all of a sudden the mood is busted – for good. That’s energy, and it’s the kind I’m talking about here. We’ve all experienced this at least once in our lives. So have you. And, when you come to think of it, when you were in the presence of the person that busted the party, you probably just knew that something was off with them. And that, dear girlfriend, was your intuition talking.

But maybe you didn’t notice your intuition, or maybe you didn’t hear it at all. Because although we’re all born with intuition and strong instincts, as we grow older, a lot of us lose touch with it. And I was no exception to this.

Although I was a very intuitive child, and a small girl that looked at the world with my feelings more than my eyes, I lost that connection to the deeper part of me almost entirely as I grew up. So for the biggest part of my adult life, I didn’t know I had intuition, nor did I hear it calling out to me.

When I stepped into my adult self, I tried so hard to silence my intuition in favour of what I thought was expected of me – or worse – what I thought I needed to think or be like in order to be loved, accepted, and ultimately be successful in my life and my businesses. And I played a very good trick on myself by becoming very good at it, to the point that I lost my intuition almost entirely.

As one of my main goals of these past few years, I vowed to reconnect with myself on a deeper level, and listening to my intuition has been a major part of that.

What started as a little voice inside of me, after a few months, became a strong sense of knowing what to do in a lot of situations. Like when you meet someone and you instinctively know something is off or that this person is not made for you. Well, by silencing my intuition, I had come to neglect those thoughts and feelings, and to allow too many people into my life and businesses, even while somehow knowing that that was wrong. Leaving very little room for those who actually mattered. And leaving me drained of mental and emotional energy on too many occasions.

Throughout the past years, I’ve started to rely on my intuition more and more. In my private life, it made me decide to let go of friendships that weren’t really meant for me and to allow new kinships to flourish – ones that I never would have thought of before, but that turned out to be amongst the best connections I’ve ever made. In my businesses, it has helped to guide me and decide what routes to take and what not to do, by really thinking about what I wanted most for myself and for my team.

But more than that, I learned to say no. Because so often your intuition will tell you to. And that was a big one for me. Both in my private life and in my businesses. Privately, listening to the urge to say no and create boundaries for myself allowed me to choose better who I give all of my love to and for whom there is no room in my life. But more than that, I learned to accept my deeper needs and to listen to them more. Like deciding that I need some time alone sometimes to nourish my soul.

Now, when it comes to business, our intuition will speak to us very often, too.

I was raised believing that yes was the only word that mattered in business, and that any customer or client was a good one who you needed to cherish. Over the years, this belief has caused me quite a lot of trouble, stress, and heartache. By listening to my intuition more, especially when it told me not to engage with a particular client or project, I’ve realised how powerful and important ‘No’ is in business.

So, there too, I learned to say ‘no’ more often than ‘yes’.

The result? A better bottom line, happier clients, and a more productive team. Because when you get to pick who you work with, business simply becomes better.

But now, how to listen to your intuition? And how to say no?

How to listen to your intuition, especially when it’s saying “no”

#1 Be open to listening to what your intuition is trying to tell you
Try to schedule time with yourself and listen. And when you have a decision to make, or you feel that something bothers you, or even in any other situation in your life… before acting, try to really feel into the moment. And ask yourself: What do I really want? How do I really feel about this? I promise, if you keep at it, your intuition will speak to you.

#2 Practice on the small things first
Rekindling your intuition, and following its lead, is not something that happens overnight. You must practice and be willing to keep listening to the deeper parts of you and what they need to tell you. And when your intuition first shows up after a long time, it can be scary, and you might not be sure you can trust yourself. So it’s okay to start small. Maybe you told yourself you needed to do something today, but in listening to your intuition, you know you should actually be doing something else instead. So do that. And once you feel comfortable and trust your intuition more, you can follow it more and more.

#3 Let me get back to you on that
Saying no is not easy. It requires a lot of strength and courage sometimes, and asks us to confront instead of comply. And that is difficult for everyone, but especially for us women, who were raised to be good girls. But your intuition will become very loud and very clear about your boundaries at some point, and when that happens, you’ll need to learn to say no. To ease you into it, here’s a trick that works miracles almost every time. When someone asks something of you, or in any other situation where you know you should say no, start by saying: “let me get back to you on that”. You’ll win precious time to prepare your ‘no’, and in many cases that will be enough to let the request vanish on its own.

I used to long for the days of my childhood when intuition and instinct came naturally to me, and for the ease of living this allowed. But I don’t long for it anymore, because I know that I still have both inside of me. I just needed to listen more closely to them, and to trust my intuition and my instincts more again. And by doing this, I’ve transformed my life. And given myself a sense of freedom in the world, and connected to it, in a way that I hadn’t felt in decades.

And so can you.

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