I have spent the last 9 months writing my new book, ‘Intuitive Parenting’ – a ‘how to’ book being published by LittleBrown next summer. An exciting project to say the least, and I am relieved to say the editing process is complete and I just finished reading the final proofs. Phew!
During the writing process, it became very evident to me that intuition –tuning into and trusting it- is not just important for parents, it applies to us all. Bombarded as we are by external and oft-extraneous influences 24/7, the ability to access our innate intuition is increasingly critical for all of us. With unprecedented quantities of virtual stimulus, never-ending streams of unsettling global news, and the pressures of just having a life in these trying times, the result can so easily be ever increasing stress and self-doubt. (No wonder anxiety and depression are on the rise!)
Tuning into and building confidence in our own innate ‘wise inner voice’ may actually require that we take less input from outside sources, if for no other reason than that the wide array of differing opinions and contradictory advice ‘out there’ can so easily result in confusion, insecurity and indecisiveness, even leading to us making regretful decisions. On the other hand, confidence in our own ‘north star’ and strengthening our intuition requires listening to it, how it feels in our bodies, and then acting on what feels right. Once we do that, the (invariably) positive feedback we get from the result builds confidence in our intuition, strengthening both our intuitive voice and our self-confidence. In other words, less ‘’Googling’ and more taking time to ‘listen’ to ourselves and that still small voice inside – and then acting on what we get is something I have become convinced of is key to both well-being and anything else we may want to achieve. Seriously.
My conviction of this has not only been strengthened by endless research results documenting the significance of managed emotions (the result of which is a greater ability to tune into one’s intuition), but also studies by well-established and reputable business publications reporting on one of the most visible side effects of the unstable times we are living in for business - that executives just cannot handle it. Clearly, one of the most important things a CEO has to do is stay focused and steady as the stress on the business becomes so intense it can feel like being under siege. However, the current climate of uncertainty leaves many a leader in panic mode, their resulting emotion-driven behaviour often derailing their businesses or at the very least magnifying problems to the degree that they negatively impacting every member of their team. The innate ability for leadership that may have originally elevated them to their current position is no longer working, for them or their business. I rest my case.
A FEW TIPS?
NOTICE YOUR BODY:
Whenever you have a decision to make, however small, check in with your body first. Breathe slowly. Centre yourself. Then imagine one of the decisions as if it is already made and check how your body feels. Does it feel uncomfortable in any way, or does it feel right? Do this with each decision. Whatever feels right, is usually right.
Give yourself time to get calm and centred. Whether you’re a parent or a leader, in a stressful situation take enough time (it needn’t be more than a minute) to centre and ‘widen your perspective to see ‘the big picture’ before determining the action needed. BE first, DO after.
Anyone who is in charge of or influencing others – be it children or employees – will do best if they can be flexible. Like an athlete or dancer, maintaining a centred balance within yourself, so you can quickly pivot to meet the need of the moment will counteract any possible damage caused by uncertainty – be that in the financial market or the farmers market with a runaway child!
Until next time, thanks for reading!