Written by Silvia Damiano
Going by that “gut feeling” is often considered risky, but in reality, we all have the ability to intuit and connect the intelligence of the mind, heart and gut. Everyone has experienced a time when they just knew something, even if they couldn’t quite explain it. We can develop intuition to better handle the uncertainties of an era of incessant change.
While we may experience that feeling of intuition in our daily life, many times we stifle our instincts, especially at work. It takes courage to realise that intuition is as valuable as logic. There is not much room for intuition when leaders are expected to do everything by the book.
Meetings, spreadsheets, memos, handling data – everything likely has a set routine. This routine is part of the problem. A recent study found that working on autopilot can cause you to be ‘out of the loop’. If this lapse occurs while someone is in a dangerous environment, such as around heavy machinery, accidents can happen.2
Giving Your Heart And Gut A Voice
Even if leaders begin to acknowledge their gut instinct, what about the heart? Listening to your heart is vital to improve agility and intuition. Ancient civilisations believed that the heart, not the brain, was the most important part of the body.
The heart-brain connection is often overlooked, even as we begin to understand that the heart is more than a simple pump. Research has shown that emotional states, including stress, impact the heart and that the heart and brain are linked. This link is comparable to the brain-gut axis.3
Scientists are now using the power of neuroscience to examine the impact of gut health on our brains. Cortisol, known as the stress hormone, increases when our brains are in an unstable state. Even mild levels of stress have an impact on microbes in the gut by decreasing the metabolism of a precursor of serotonin, a mood stabiliser.4
The only real valuable thing is intuition.