Should I go with my gut feeling?

Mindletic

2 min read

Sometimes we make decisions based on our “gut feeling”. We feel like we “know” what feels right and consequently make judgments about a person or an activity. Perhaps you met someone that you instantly felt remorseful of or experienced an unexplainable urge to skip the get-together drinks with your co-workers. This intuitive decision-making has a perfect explanation by our fellow scientists.

What exactly is a “gut feeling”?

The gut, similarly, to our brain, is a complex mechanism full of neurotransmitters and signaling molecules which all are a part of the enteric nervous system. As it is also wired to the limbic part of the brain responsible for emotions and intuition, it is often called the “second brain”. That explains the sinking feeling at the back of your stomach before you speak in front of hundreds of people. The brain signals about the changes of the environment, whereas the gut microbiota can influence the body’s level of the potent neurotransmitter serotonin, which is responsible for regulating the feeling of happiness. Therefore, there is always two-way communication, which causes our body to be alert in novel situations.

.Be aware of the situation, before trusting your gut

The research has shown that usually individuals are more satisfied with decisions based on their gut feeling. In one study, the subjects could choose from alternatives - either from their intuition or thinking through the pros and cons. The results have revealed that people were less content with their choices from the rational-reasoning cohort. However, rational choices are still more advantageous in logical problem-solving. For example, situations with extreme uncertainty can be paralyzing - you would probably want your doctor to rely on his or her previous knowledge. Yet, when the problem includes multiple aspects and a more controlled environment (e.g., whether you have to solve a complex personal problem, interpersonal relationship, or deal with illness) intuitive decisions were observed to be more skilled and beneficial.

.Listen to your mood first

There are complementary studies that prove that we, as individuals, tend to rely more on our gut feeling when we are in a positive mood. A positive mood enlarges our thought-action repertoire and makes us more open to new information, subsequently igniting our holistic approach to life. Sadness, however, fosters our analytical reasoning and makes us focus on small details rather than the bigger picture. Subsequently, we could be easily distracted by any setbacks. Thus, before making any decision, listen to yourself, how do you feel today, and how it may influence your decisions?

EXERCISES

#1// Pay attention to the messages of your intuition

Sit comfortably and close your eyes. Be aware of your body and walk through your day thinking about how every situation felt like within your body. Have you noticed any patterns or perhaps messages? Be very mindful!

#2// Meditate

You could deepen your connection with intuition by meditating. You could always sit on your own and try a technique you are comfortable with, or simply check the Mindletic app for guided meditations.

#3// Leave your inner critic behind

Negative thoughts leave no space for intuitive thinking, try to find at least 3 things every day that you like about yourself and journal it for a week. You are a beautiful person inside and out.

#4// Get creative

Creativity nourishes intuition, grab a canvas and take yourself out in the park to paint your surroundings.

#5// Spend some time in nature

City life can be overburdening, making us feel stuck in certain frames, unable to think freely. Go for a walk in the forest, allow your mind to wander, and listen to your true instincts.

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