Intuition and Your Career; 6 Ways to Harness Your Intuition for Making Career Decisions
Many of us have had a major stumble at some point in our careers. (Okay, well I haven't, but let's just say that I have "a friend" who's made plenty!) Perhaps you made a bad hiring decision, took the wrong job at the wrong time, or trusted the wrong colleague with sensitive information. You had a sense, or a feeling about it, but for whatever reason, you choose to ignore it.

Consider these scenarios:
You wake up on Monday morning, and the name of a former co-worker pops into your mind. You wonder what it means, but you brush it off and instead of calling them, you let it go. Later in the week you learn that this same co-worker, who works at a great company, just hired a new product manager. Yep, you guessed it: the perfect position for you.

And then there’s the job interview you had mixed feelings about, but you went ahead and accepted the job offer anyway – it was just too good to turn down. After a few months on the job, you’re miserable due to your mentally unstable boss who believes you’re out to get her job.

Seriously, I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried. They are actual examples I’ve heard from former clients.

When I ask clients if they knew that something "wasn’t right," they confirm that they did. They can pinpoint the exact moment that their intuition spoke to them. But intuition is sometimes vague. It seems so inconsistent with what our heads are telling us that we question it. We ignore it because it’s not in line with the rest of the information we’ve got. It’s only a piece of the puzzle, and we just don’t know what to do with it, so we set it aside instead of acting on it.

When we look back, our 20/20 hindsight provides us with the rest of the details. We can see, with great clarity, where the puzzle piece fits into the big picture. We can identify what went wrong, and when. Intuition, hunch, or gut – whatever you call it, it’s usually much more accurate than your analytical mind.

Your intuitive voice, or inner wisdom, doesn't always make sense or follow logical patterns. It requires a deeper level of faith to trust it. If you find yourself rationalizing why you handled a project or a situation in a particular way, chances are you're rationalizing against your intuition. The rational mind wants to try and understand, while the intuitive mind just "knows."

How do you know when to trust or listen to your intuition? It just takes practice and a regular connection: Try slowing down and allowing for quiet to reconnect you to your inner wisdom. Try these tips to get your intuitive voice to talk:

  1. Use your morning shower as a meditative time. Let your mind wander.
  2. With a piece of paper in front of you, and a pen in your non-dominant hand, ask yourself a question and then write the answer down.
  3. Find the place in your body that is connected to your inner voice - throat, stomach, chest, heart - and then pay attention to this physical cue the next time you sense it.
  4. Connect through physical movement. Some people find that walking, yoga, dancing, bicycling or any type of physical activity helps them tap into their intuition.
  5. Invite your intuition to make a collage of pictures from magazines. No analyzing or thinking too much about it. Ask your intuition to guide you.
  6. Keep an intuition journal. At the end of each day, write down one thing that you sense came from your intuitive voice.