You're in a conversation with a colleague, maybe on a first date, maybe you're meeting someone on the plane, or you keep noticing that every time you think about this person or that situation, you get a funny feeling in your gut. The context may be personal, it may be professional. The sense may be subtle, if you're lucky it may be really strong. And either way, you might not be able to identify exactly what it is. You just know it's there. What do you do?
Generally, this is where we either override and keep on moving, dismissing the voice, the gut, the contraction in our system that tells us something is not right. Or, if we're being our own best friend and advocate, we listen.
The little voice is tricky because it often goes against something we really want:
- that business deal that would bring in great revenue and set your team up beautifully (but something feels off)
- that collaboration that would propel impact and be great for your ego (but, gosh, you've caught them in three white lies... give them the benefit of the doubt? Um. No.)
- that romantic prospect that seems magical (but those red flags, are they magic?)
- that relationship (or job or agreement) you're in that you really want to make work (after all, you've invested so much into it, and taking it apart will be painful/inconvenient)
- that thing you've been dying to buy (but your gut tells you to hold off)
- that decision that your kid really wants to be a "yes!" (but, argh... your system is all "no")
- that "thing" that person keeps doing that feels "off" (or inappropriate or boundary-bashing) that you just can't help but give them the benefit of the doubt on (besides, conflict is so hard, and is it that big of a deal? Umm. Yep.)
The list is endless. If you're present and paying attention, you'll notice that these kinds of moments are likely happening throughout your day (for the littlest of things and biggest) where your little voice will say, "Whoa... hold on, pay attention, pause, that didn't feel right/good, speak up, get more information, or... run!" Once you've experienced this feeling, your intuition has done its part, your part is now in listening, honoring, and choosing what to do with it.
The great thing about that "little voice" is that the more you listen to it and honor it, the louder, clearer, and more specific it gets. But you have to do the work and listen to it. Presence and self-care will make this 100x easier.
What little voice are you ignoring today? What are you hoping isn't true? Where would it be so much easier to just keep pushing through and overriding that feeling? In my experience, a little voice ignored will eventually make itself loud and clear as to why it was speaking up in the first place.
Listen. Get curious. Love yourself enough to pay attention here... //AXC
Note: If you follow the IEP Method® work, the "little voice" and honoring our intuition and "knowingness" falls under the "Essential You," LeaderCare, and Quadrants 1, 2, and 3 for Physical, Mental, and Vibrational energy. (I would also say it's in Quad 4 for Relational Energy -- cuz that voice is gold and essential to healthy and clean relationships.) If you want to learn the IEP Method or get a refresher, check out our IEP-103 self-study course or one of my books.