I = Intuition

IMPACTFUL Leadership starts with IIn today’s blog we are going to look at the I of IMPACTFUL leadership traits which is Intuition.  Great leaders have bucket loads of Intuition and know when to listen to that gut instinct that tells them what to do, sometimes against all rational, logical thoughts.

So what is intuition?  When I used to work in the Corporate world a number of my coaches always suggested I listen to my intuition but quite frankly I was never really sure what they meant.  What was this illusive quality called intuition and indeed what did it mean.  I’m ever indebted to Liz Mitten-Ryan of Equinisity who shared with me that intuition is made up of two words inner and tuition so to her intuition is about listening to our inner teachings.  The things that we just know about the world, our gut feeling.  There is nothing to learn, we just know when something is right or wrong.  Listening to these ancient teachings, that have been handed down from generation to generation can help us live a more fulfilling, authentic life.  I know at times in the past that I have believed that I don’t have any intuition but then I remember the my intuition is always working it is just that I’m not tuned to the right radio station to hear it.  If I focus and make myself open to tune in and listen to my intuition then I can hear it load and clear – just like the radio station playing in the background in my kitchen.

Listening to that gut instinct deep inside your body is perhaps one of the greatest gifts that you can give yourself, and your team members.  It is there for your self-preservation and time and time again I find myself and my clients ignoring this inner voice preferring to listen to the rational, intellectual left brain.  Being around horses teaches you never to ignore your instincts but rather rely on them as credible, unquestionable , sources of information and communication.  Put simply, if we don’t listen to our instincts then we can get ourselves and our equine friends in danger.  Once we begin to trust our instincts then a whole new world of opportunities and possibilities opens up for us as we tune into things that we never saw before.

As prey animals horses have to listen to and trust their instincts in order to survive. This makes them great teachers and role models for us.  By contrast, humans have over the years forgotten to listen to their natural instincts. In fact many of us carry on regardless, never listening to that inner voice, or if we hear it then we ignore it, and then we wonder why things turn out so badly.

I recall when I was working in Corporateland that I invariably failed to listen to that inner voice.  I made decisions that I regretted and kept taking on new projects, even though I barely had time to complete the work I already had on my desk.  Quite frankly, I didn’t trust my gut instincts that were telling me to slow down and stop taking on more work.  The net result was that I burnt out and experienced fatigue.  This was the ultimate way of my body telling me to stop.  I couldn’t help but hear the message loud and clear when I was drained of energy.

But why was it that I never listened to what was going on and blindly carried on regardless?  I guess it was because I never trusted myself, I never trusted myself to listen to that inner voice with all its wisdom.  I never listened to my heart and gut and the funny thing is that despite this being our instinctive reaction (our survival mechanism) society has helped us numb this feeling and so discount it from the list of rational solutions that are available.  And yet, listening to our instincts isn’t a sign of weakness it is a sign of strength.

Great leaders realise the value of listening to their intuition.  Will you listen to your intuition today?

Extract from Unbridled Success – How The Secret Lives of Horses Can Impact Your Leadership, Teamwork and Communication Skills.  You can purchase the book here from Amazon

On November 8th, 2012, posted in: Intuition, Leadership by

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