Trusting Your Gut

Dear Persuader,

“Intuition is the supra-logic that cuts out all the routine processes of thought and leaps straight from the problem to the answer.” ~Robert Graves

Logic versus instinct.  Reason versus intuition. Fortunately for us, we don’t have to choose one way of thinking over the other because both are absolutely necessary in order to be good persuaders of ourselves and others.

However, in the West, specifically the educational system in the U.S., our schooling has focused 99 percent of its time developing the logical, reasoning aspect of the student/citizen.   I believe this is a huge mistake.  It’s like cutting off one of our senses (actually, it’s not ‘like’ cutting off one of our senses, it is cutting off one of our senses).  And the self actualized person necessarily begins on a journey of developing the other side of our natures.

True, some people are more predisposed to the intuitive — artists, musicians, writers, philosophers — and it comes very naturally to them. Others of us have to make a very conscious decision to nurture instinct and intuition.

So how do the intuitionally challenged begin to flex this muscle?  First step is to begin to check in to our bodies.  I know that sounds a little odd, but many of the “sighs” of instinct and intuition are very body oriented.   Think of how some people describe it, “I just felt it in my gut,” or “I had a lump in my throat”.  The physical manifestation of instinct can feel sharp and intense, or it can be a slow burn that spreads.   Part of the reason it’s hard to pin down is because people experience it differently.

The key is: pay attention.  And once you begin to hear it, you must begin to trust that small voice inside of you.

What does this have to do with persuasion?  Well, think about it.  How do people make decisions to buy?  It’s not logic, I can tell you that.  People buy based on their feelings and then they back it up with logic.   If we understand how our own feelings, intuitions and instincts work, we’re in a better position to understand how our prospects and clients are processing their decisions to buy or not buy.

So what to do when you begin to feel it and begin paying attention?  Well, start going with what it’s telling you.   If the path you’re on is dark and feels unsafe and the hairs on the back of your neck are standing on end, quickly get to safety.   If the person you’re hoping to make a deal with strikes you as untrustworthy, don’t push forward just because you want to make the deal but trust yourself to know the situation lacks integrity.

Albert Einstein, a very logical and highly intelligent guy by most everybody’s standards once said, “The only real valuable thing is intuition.”   As you work to develop yours, you’ll begin to understand the truth in this statement.

To your success!


PS… Don’t forget to post your comments to the blog below.

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Cobbiwan - July 15, 2010


You are so right. The education system was perfectly designed to make good factory workers. Focus for a period, move when the bell rings, asks questions only we it is question asking time.

Getting in touch with the 6th and 7th senses (intuition and awareness) requires unlearning institutionalized bad habits and frames

Spot on


Kenrick - July 19, 2010

Hi Gary,

Thanks for responding.

First, the blog is definitely where I post my opinions.

That said, in looking at your post, I’m moved.

In addition to the areas of concern I wrote about, I whole heartedly embrace the major problems you write about.

Your point #2 is an interesting one. It’s hard for me to think of schools as authority. I’ve found that the public schools don’t accept the family as the highest authority, so therefore, I generally refused them much authority with our kids. When they respected our authority, I gladly did the same.

I’m curious what your thoughts (and the thoughts of our readers) are on this.

How schooling has changed from when I was in private school many years ago.

Thanks again. And by the way, even if we disagree, it’s ok as I respect a reasoned exchange of viewpoints. So thank you for adding to the discussion.


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