One of the most common questions I get asked about intuitive living is, how do I know when my intuition is communicating with me?
In other words, how do I know the difference between my intuition and my regular thoughts? What does it feel like to receive intuitive guidance?
Before I dive into what intuition actually feels like, I want to acknowledge that both thoughts and intuition are helpful and useful. There’s a reason we have a brain…logic is a necessary and important part of our human experience. There are also times when logic won’t help us, and that’s when tuning in to our intuition becomes important.
Ultimately, you need both logic and intuition to live an authentic, fulfilling and enjoyable life!
I also want to remind you that you have access to your intuition whether you realize it or not. If you think you can’t access your intuition, don’t worry, I promise you that you can!
Believe it or not, you have heard your inner voice (the voice of your Wise Self, aka your intuition) even if you haven’t recognized it or aren’t familiar with it. That’s because your intuition doesn’t feel all that different from your regular thoughts!
After all, thoughts and intuition are closely related. Thoughts are just ideas that pop into your head. Those ideas could be spurred by logic or by intuition, which is why they can sometimes be hard to differentiate.
For the most part, you probably don’t think much about where your thoughts are coming from. But, it’s when you start trying to intentionally access your intuition that you start questioning whether it’s your mind answering or your Wise Self.
Luckily, the answer is actually in that last statement: your intention dictates whether you access your mind or your intuition.
If you set an intention to access your intuition, you will. Simple!
What’s confusing is knowing where your intuition stops and your mind begins. As you wait for your Wise Self to answer or sometimes immediately after you receive intuitive information, your mind will jump in and start to overthink or add doubt to the guidance you received.
To follow your intuition, you have to be able to separate the intuitive information from the mental chatter, by becoming familiar with how you receive intuitive information and what it feels like. This takes practice!
There are some subtle differences that I’ve noticed about how intuition feels that can help you get started. But the best way to strengthen your intuition is to pay attention to how YOU specifically receive information. Keep track of your experiences in a journal and over time, you’ll see your Wise Self begin to emerge.
What intuition can feel like:
- An instinctive & instant word, message or sensation (before your mind has a chance to think about it!)
- A hunch, nudge, urge or gut feeling (it could be gentle or strong)
- A picture or image that pops into your mind
- A feeling or sensation in a part of your body (butterflies, goosebumps, aches, warmth, tingles, etc.)
- A voice in your head that sounds different from your normal “thinking” voice (but can still be your voice)
- A knowing or insight without an explanation of how you know it
Other than in a crisis situation, your intuition will probably feel lighter and more supportive than your regular thoughts. Your intuition is not judgemental or afraid.
Intuitive messages also tend to be neutral and offer a broad perspective because your Wise Self understands that there are multiple paths, decisions and choices you can make at any given moment.
Sometimes the intuitive information is a simply a feeling or a knowing, and the rest is just mind chatter. You really have to stay present and be aware of how the intuition feels.
If you’re just getting started with intuitive living, don’t give up! It takes time and patience to build your connection to your Wise Self. You will get there!
Feel free to explore some of my other posts about intuition:
5 Steps to Strengthen Your Intuition
5 mistakes you could be making when connecting to your intuition
Signs, Symbols & Synchronicity: What is your intuition trying to communicate?