Recently I developed a presentation focused on accessing intuition. Of course anyone who has worked with the DecisionClarity process knows it is designed with a similar objective but recently I was faced with the opportunity to create a simplified interpretation that could have broader application. I realized it starts with a belief that you can be intuitive then there are fundamentally still four steps:
1) Set an intention
2) Getting the mind out of the way.
3) Let go of attachment to an outcome.
5) Paying attention.
Of course wanting to get the thoughts out of the way is much easier said than done. Some people are naturally intuitive and recognize an insight when it comes but most of us have little practice or experience. To stop thinking requires discipline and the best way to explore this is through meditation. Some people react negatively to the idea of meditation associating it with some weird religious rites. In fact in its purest form meditation is simply the art of concentration and focusing the mind. We can do that by simply paying attention to the breath or alternatively by focusing the mind on some simple words. They can be anything that works for you e.g. “I know what to do and I do it.” In my experience setting an intention and starting to meditate will encourage the intuitive senses to emerge. Then we need attention to pick up the signs, clues, serendipity and synchronicity that is the way that our intuition often shows up.
Meditation is a bit like a wonder drug except it is free with no side effects. Proven benefits include reducing stress, stimulating the immune system, increasing blood flow, regulating the heart beat, improving mood, activating the intuitive faculties, strengthening neural pathways, improving compassion and empathy. In the space of the past four weeks I had an e-mail from Dr. Andrew Weil summarizing the seven benefits of meditation that he is aware of then encountered a wonderful book by Rick Hansen titled, “ Buddha’s Brain – the practical neuroscience of happiness, love and wisdom which listed a dozen more. It is easy to convince yourself of the power of meditation if you take the trouble to review the data but most of us don’t.
Why not? I think there is a great deal of resistance to the idea by the ego. It involves surrender and letting go and the ego does not trust anyone to run your life but itself. I think the ego’s fear is well founded because there are side effects of meditation. Besides all the benefits that I have listed above you run the risk that your life will change. You may stop seeing the world as black and white, you may find yourself relating to a greater whole of which you are part, and in my case meditation was the start of a journey that changed everything. If you had told the atheist executive vice president of an advertising agency twenty years ago he would be a spiritual coach, conduct dream workshops, write a book on decision-making and work as a teacher at Inspire4 Health, he may well have laughed at the idea but then he started to meditate…..