Do you ever get a gut feeling you’re making the wrong decision? Have you ever gotten a hunch you’ve just met someone who will play an important role in your life? This is your intuition speaking, the inner voice of your heart and soul that has an instinctive sense of what feels right and wrong and what you should pay more attention to. It's a powerful type of intelligence that allows you to communicate, behave, and interact with the world more effectively and in a way that enhances your well-being.
Strengthening your intuition plays an integral role in your health. With a grounded presence and focus on where your heart may be leading you, you can tune in to what your body wants and needs. Whether your gut is telling you to remove yourself from a toxic relationship or explore new career options, your intuition can act as an internal compass guiding you in the direction of a happier, more fulfilling life.
Eight ways to develop a stronger intuition:
Meditation is a mindfulness technique that challenges you to pause and be still with your thoughts, acknowledging your physical and emotional presence as you breathe in and out. By adopting a regular meditation practice, you can learn to tune out racing thoughts and find a more consistent, calm, and relaxed state of mind. This peaceful feeling can help you become more in tune with your subconscious mind, or the natural intuition you possess that guides you in a certain direction.
2. Ask questions.
Sometimes the answer is right there – you just need to do a bit of digging! If you feel like you can’t quite grasp what your intuition is telling you, ask yourself pointed questions to gain more clarity:
What is it about this setting that makes me feel uneasy?
What is currently in the way of me reaching my larger goals?
What is holding me back from communicating my needs to my partner?
Why do I feel stuck in this situation? What's the best way to pull myself out?
Notice what comes to mind as you ponder these questions, and record those thoughts, feelings, or images on paper. When you ask yourself direct questions, you are consciously setting an intention to find clarity. Your subconscious may uncover a couple of different answers at first, but by observing and taking note of your initial thoughts and feelings, you can eventually find a clearer answer.
3. Learn from the past.
Each of us has a unique past and set of experiences that have shaped us into the people we are today. These experiences and insights live on as memories, which your mind and body pull from when assessing any situation.
Do you find certain interactions with people in your life leave you feeling drained? Do you find yourself following a certain “healthy diet” protocol, only to feel hungry and unsatisfied? Your intuitive mind takes note of these issues and how they play into your overall well-being. Homing in on your intuition means acknowledging why you feel the way you do, learning from the past, and making more informed decisions for the future. This could mean being more proactive in limiting your interaction with a certain person or making more of an effort to listen to your body when you're hungry.
4. Align with your values.
Close your eyes for a moment and consider the things that are most important to you and the practices that bring value to your life. Is it time spent with family? The hour a week you devote to a spiritual practice? Volunteer work within your community?
Whatever resonates with you, aligning your life with your values can help you better access your natural intuition. There are many physical and emotional distractions in day-to-day life, often interfering with your innate ability to determine what works in your life and what doesn’t. Finding balance and dedicating time to people or things that bring value to your life will help you feel empowered – and in turn more aligned with your intuition.
5. Spend time in nature.
It’s well-known that spending time in nature can promote mental and emotional well-being. From enjoying a walk through a stretch of green grass to hiking by a peaceful stream, when you connect with the rhythm of the natural world, you are moving at the same beat as the earth and its elements. In fact, coming into physical contact with the earth can help you feel more grounded, promoting a state of balance, clarity, and often connection with your intuition.
6. Pay attention to your dreams.
Sometimes, the things you dream about provide clarity about your waking life. When you’re asleep, the cognitive mind is at rest, giving your subconscious mind – your intuition – space to communicate its needs. While some parts of your dreams may be inconsequential, take note of recurring themes that could be signaling you to stop and listen to what your intuition is telling you.
7. Listen to your body.
Your intuition often communicates something is off through physical sensations in the body. Perhaps you feel a stomachache, light-headed, or a pang in your gut – these symptoms could be the manifestation of your intuition telling you to evaluate (or reevaluate) certain aspects of your life. By tuning in to the reasoning behind that gut feeling, you can address the discomfort at its source.
8. Trust yourself.
At the end of the day, you know yourself and your personal needs better than anyone. Rather than second-guessing all your choices, allow yourself to let go a bit and trust the process. When you cultivate this radical trust in yourself, your subconscious needs can surface more easily, honing your intuition to embrace more opportunities for a happy, healthy, and fulfilling life.
Intuition in the Health Coach–client relationship
Health Coaches support clients as they make sustainable lifestyle changes that fit their personal goals; however, the Health Coach role extends deeper than that. A Health Coach offers unconditional attention and presence to clients, providing a space free of judgment. This safe space encourages clients to feel comfortable sharing their concerns, hopes, needs, and goals!
Health looks different for everyone – something we at IIN refer to as bio-individuality, the idea that each person has unique nutritional, lifestyle, and environmental factors that help them thrive. A Health Coach is trained to approach their client’s health through this holistic lens, helping them trust their gut intuition and work toward meeting their bio-individual needs and goals each day.
Ready to turn your passion for holistic health and helping others into a thriving professional career? Check out the IIN Curriculum Guide today for an overview of the Health Coach Training Program.