Sometimes we're just living life, minding our own business, when our brains or bodies have the audacity to suggest we do something.
Joenelle (my wife) and I were sitting on the couch the other day, finishing an episode of the Great British Baking Show (which is arguably not great), and about to get ready for bed when I got a nudge that told me, "You need ice cream."
No I didn't. No one needs ice cream. I tell myself this internally, but my brain had already nudged my mouth to say, "Hey Jo, you want ice cream?"
As we drove back from Andy's Frozen Custard, I had to consider, "How did I get here? Has this happened before? Is there an explanation for this?" It turns out there is.
I called it a nudge, but scientists may refer to it as intuition, or a "gut feeling." And whoever named it that must have ruminated on it for awhile... It turns out our gut has over 100 million neurons in it, earning it the nickname the "Second Brain." These so called 'nudges' we get are important, they have legitimate merit and should be listened to.
A few days after finishing my ice cream, I was at my CrossFit gym working off the calories. Our gym owner, Amy, was there working on her laptop when a question popped into my head. I shook it off and got some water. It persisted. I argued audibly with my own thoughts and began packing my things. My stomach started to turn and I felt almost noxious as I tried leaving, a signal that I wasn't yet supposed to leave. I turned around and walked up to Amy. I stammered, "I don't know why I'm asking you this, and I don't want this to come out wrong, but I just have a question. What are your goals for this place?"
What I thought might be a brief, but kind response, turned into an almost hour long conversation about faith, purpose, and community. Amy and I's relationship completely shifted simply because I listened to my gut.
Most of us want to believe that if we consistently make logic-based decisions, things will turn out alright. But what if they can turn out great? It might be time to start trusting our gut.
The next time your gut tells you to do something, don't question it. Just act.
What is at stake if you don't listen to your intuition?
“Feelings do not always determine truth, but they can sometimes tell you what is true.”
- J.R. Rim