By: Brian Tracy
It has been said that men and women start to become great when they begin to listen to their inner voices. Your intuition is your direct connection with infinite intelligence. Intuition is so powerful that it has been studies and written about by the greatest men and women of history for thousands of years. When you begin to use it regularly and systematically, there is virtually nothing that you cannot accomplish.
Your intuition has often been called the still small voice within. You may experience your intuition as a gut-feeling, as an inner sense of what is right or wrong for you. Sometimes your intuition manifests itself as a hunch or an inspiration. Often it comes as a flash of insight. Your intuition leads you to new ideas, concepts and breakthroughs. Sometimes, an intuitive flash will enable you to see a situation completely differently and solve it on a completely different level. Einstein was referring to intuition when he said, No problem can be solved on the same level at which you meet it.
In breakthrough thinking, we are taught to redefine a problem and take it to a higher level in order to find a solution for it. Since the more you do of what you're doing, the more you'll get of what you've got, trying to solve your current problem at your current level is often an exercise in frustration. You can unlock your intuition by using your imagination to think about your problem in a completely different way.
There are two major types of imagination that you use continually, both of which require the highest use of your intuitive powers. They are first, synthetic imagination and, second, creative imagination. Synthetic imagination is your ability to assemble existing pieces of knowledge and information into new forms. It is very much like taking all the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, having a clear idea of the picture or goal that you want to accomplish and assembling them into a single piece.
This form of imagination is often called, integrative intelligence. It is one of the highest forms of intelligence for success and achievement anywhere. Integrative intelligence is defined as your ability to integrate a large number of different pieces of information into a single precept for decision and action. It is your ability to recognize and sort many different facts and insights together, emphasizing some and discarding others, in the process of making the correct decision. This form of intelligence is extremely valuable in fast-moving, fluid situations that require your considering a large number of different pieces of information in making a decision.
It has been estimated that you need between 20,000 and 50,000 bits of information at your disposal to be really successful in any field of endeavor. We live in the information age, and knowledge is the raw material of production and value in this age. So the more different bits or bytes of information that you have, the more effective your integrative intelligence, or synthetic imagination, will be.
The people who rise to the top of any field of endeavor are invariably those who know more than others. In fact, the division in our society today is not between those who have more and have less but between those who know more and those who know less. One of your jobs is to be continually gathering additional bits of practical and useful information so that you have plenty of different ideas and concepts to draw upon when you are wrestling with any problem or striving toward any goal. Your intuition then goes to work for you by helping you quickly sort out the relevant facts and giving you the answers you need when you need them.
The more ideas you expose yourself to, the greater the probability that the right idea will appear at the right time. When it does, your intuition will help you to recognize the idea and integrate it into everything else you are doing.
The second form of imagination is creative imagination. This is a higher form of imagination where intuition plays an even more important part. Creative imagination refers to your ability to come up with completely new and different ideas and concepts to solve your problems and achieve your goals. It is the highest form of imagination and is responsible for all the great breakthroughs in science, technology, art, music, literature, and medicine. The most successful men and women of all time have been those who have deliberately trained themselves to tap into their creative imagination on a regular basis. And so can you, if you learn how. Your creative imagination is the source of all hunches, inspirations, imagination, flashes of insight and new understandings of complex concepts. The cultivation and development of your creative imagination can enable you to make more progress in one or two years than the average person might make in ten or twenty. And your creativity, your intuitive sense is like a muscle. It grows with use. The more you practice with it and rely on it, the stronger it becomes and the faster it acts for you.
Men and women who have highly developed imaginations have often reached the point where they completely trust their intuition, their inner voices, to guide them in every situation. They never speak or act until they feel an inner urging to do so. They know that their intuition will always bring them exactly the right answer, at exactly the right time.
Your intuition is your direct pipeline to a form of intelligence that is completely beyond your conscious brain. It is accessed by your subconscious mind, which his controlled by the thoughts you think and the beliefs you hold in your conscious mind. The more you affirm and visualize your desired goals in your conscious mind, the more readily they are picked up by your subconscious mind and the more rapidly your intuition or creative imagination is triggered. Successful, effective, happy people are those who have gotten onto the beam of their own intuitive senses and who rely continuously on their inner guidance. And they seldom make mistakes.
In your lifetime, you have made a lot of decisions, some of them right and some of them wrong. But when your intuition tells you to do or to not do something, it is always correct. If you have ever gone against your intuition, your inner voice, haven't you regretted it? Wherever you have pushed aside that nagging inner feeling, hasn't it come back to haunt you? This is because your intuition is always correct. It always gives you exactly the right answer for you at any given time, and in any given situation. One of the smartest things that you can ever do is to listen carefully to your intuition and to postpone making a decision until you have an inner sense of what choices are correct.
You will often find that your intuition will urge you to either speak up or to remain silent in a social or business situation. Later, it will turn out that that was exactly the right thing to do. In retrospect, you will find that your intuitive learning has always been more accurate than anything that you could think of with your conscious mind.
All the great writers, composers, artists, and scientists have developed the habit of listening to their intuition. You have access to the same intuitive powers as the smartest men and women who ever lived.
By the way, research shows that men and women, tested separately, have intuitions that are equally accurate. They seem to come up with the same intuitive answers for complex problems and questions. Why is it, then, that women's intuition is more respected than men's? The answer is simple. Women listen to their intuition more, while men have a tendency to brush it aside.
When a woman says, This situation doesn't feel right, she views this feeling as a valid and important assessment of whether the situation is right or wrong. Women are very respectful of their intuitive feelings and they generally refuse to go against them. Men will often put aside their intuitive leanings in favor of short-term advantage, only to pay the price later.
Perhaps the best method for stimulating your intuition is by learning to practice solitude on a regular basis. Throughout the ages, the greatest thinkers of all time have practiced solitude as a regular part of their work and life. They have taken time to be alone with themselves. They have gone off and sat quietly prior to any situation of importance. Most of the great thinkers of today use solitude as an essential tool in developing the creative insights and intuitions that often have the power to change our lives.
Most people have never practiced solitude because they wrongly believe that they have no time for it. However, one good idea that comes to you in the silence of solitude can save you a year of hard work. You cannot afford not to practice solitude on a regular basis. Here's how you do it.
First, find a place to sit where you can be completely alone, in silence, without interruptions. You want to avoid any activities that will disturb your reverie, such as eating, drinking, listening to music, and getting telephone calls. You can sit in your basement, your backyard, or on a park bench. The main objective is to be completely alone with yourself.
And second, force yourself to sit without moving for 60 minutes. The first 25 or 30 minutes will be excruciatingly difficult. You will have an irresistible urge to get up and walk around. But you must persist. You must force yourself to stay still.
After 25 or 30 minutes, a wonderful thing will happen. You will start to feel very good about yourself and your life. You will relax completely. Your mind will become calm and clear. You will feel energy flowing through your body. The situations and difficulties of your life will seem to fade away, and you will begin to get tremendous clarity on how to reach your goals.
At the end of your 60 minutes, get up and do exactly what your intuition told you to do. Don't worry about whether or not people will like it or approve of it. Just take the action, make the commitment, do the deed. You will find later that this was exactly the right thing to do.
Solitude requires no energy, no effort, no trying at all. It simply requires a state of relaxed awareness where you open your mind to infinite intelligence. And at the right moment, exactly the right answer you need will come to you, in exactly the right form.
You can overcome any obstacle, solve any problem or achieve any goal by tapping into the incredible powers of your mind and by trusting your intuition in everything you do. Once you begin to develop and use your intuition, you will become more alert, more aware, smarter and more effective in everything that you do. And your potential will begin to unfold at a speed that you cannot now imagine.
Brian Tracy is a leading authority on personal and business success. As Chairman and CEO of Brian Tracy International, he is the best-selling author of 17 books and over 300 audio and video learning programs. Copyright 2001 Brian Tracy International. All Rights Reserved. http://www.briantracy.com/