Everybody says to always trust your gut, but nobody seems to know what that means, exactly.

There are many phrases and sayings surrounding your own instincts and intuition. People say that they ‘had a gut feeling’ or tell you ‘always trust your gut’ when it comes to making important decisions.

Why is this?

We have so many avenues of discussion and information open to us in this day and age. So there is no need to rely solely on our own feelings anymore. And yet, people continue to trust their guts over other available evidence.

There may be a number of reasons for this, but one of the main ones is that people tend to be more sensitive than they realise. We pick up on things below the level of conscious thought, which can influence our actions and decisions later.

If you are worried about letting go and letting your biology take the lead, don’t worry.

There’s no need to jump straight into trusting your gut to make huge decisions. Try and follow your instincts on small decisions first. Once you have seen the results and know that you can fully trust yourself, then you can start moving into always trusting your gut for bigger decisions.

1. Don’t ignore your gut feeling about health

Many people ‘just know’ that there is something wrong with them, even when they seem otherwise healthy. Think of how many people go to the doctor (including me!) with their suspicions, only to be proven right in the face of the evidence.

The reason for this is surprisingly simple, and when you think about it, it makes perfect sense. You know how your body works and how it feels when you are healthy. When something is out of kilter, you will know, because your body will feel differently to the way it normally does. Don’t ignore this feeling!

2. Always trust your gut for danger

I remember reading about a fireman who was in the middle of a burning building with his team. Everything was going as well as you can expect a fire to be going. Suddenly, he had a feeling that everybody was in danger, and that they needed to leave the area immediately. Once everybody had cleared the building, an unseen force caused the roof to collapse. If the firemen had still been inside, they would all be dead now.

It was only afterwards, when the cause of the fire had been ascertained, that the man realised he had seen the exact conditions in another fire, some time before. You should never ignore an instinct which tells you that you are in danger – it may very well be right.

We are animals, after all, and we do still have the instincts and reactions of animals, even if they have become muted after our thousands of years of evolution. This is not to say that we are always correct, of course.

All of the recent reports of shootings where people are completely innocent of any perceived crime or wrong-doing show. In this particular instance, it is particularly important for us to use our brains in conjunction with our guts.

3. Trust your gut to reach your potential

Again, people who do this should always use a healthy dose of critical thinking before they enact anything drastic. But there is a lot to be said for making life changes which can take hold of your life.

Trust your gut when it says that you can expand your potential and meet new targets in life. Meeting your potential can be as simple as taking a baking class to bring your cakes to the next level. Or it may be as complex as setting out to learn a new language in preparation for a trip abroad. It doesn’t really matter.

What matters is your willingness to follow your gut when it tells you that whatever subject it is that will expand your potential, it will be the one that you enjoy and that will lead you to new places. Expanding your potential is worth a lot, and it can sometimes take that push from your gut to convince you to do it.

4. Always trust your gut to tell you that you can do something

This applies to two different areas. If you are trained in a certain area and you know how to handle that area well, don’t put yourself down. Stand up and make sure that people know you can do it. This applies to your normal work or hobbies, to any particular new situations, and to emergencies. Don’t let yourself be ignored or pushed aside. Make sure that you stand up for yourself and your abilities.

Sometimes, we end up in situations where we have the opportunity to try new things or try something which we haven’t done for a while. You should trust your instincts here too. Try something new and you might find that you enjoy it!

It doesn’t need to be something as terrifying as sky-diving. It can simply be landscape painting or gardening. Just go with it, if your gut tells you to. You might be surprised by what happens.

5. Go with your gut when it comes to love

Note that this is not in reference to the falling in love at first sight, which is the favourite plot of all kinds of movies. That may happen, but it is not something that does so regularly.

No, when we talk about trusting our gut when it comes to love, it means that we take a chance which we might not otherwise take. People are wary around matters of the heart for a good reason. It is so easy to get hurt, after all. But trusting your gut can lead to great things; and who knows what will come next?


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