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Intuition is generally perceived to be something that is pre-programmed in humans and whether that is true or not, intuition is something that needs nurturing and feedback. It is a form of communication, which is a two way street. If intuition is going to do us any good, we must respond to it. The more we respond to it, grapple with it, argue with it, the more we create the relationship we need with it. I did not always have a great relationship with intuition, but over time, and with critical thinking, I have seen just how important this relationship is.

I recall the first time I ignored my intuition as an adult. In fact, I blatantly stared it down and threatened it into submission. I was 25, and not in a relationship. Everyone around me never missed an opportunity to express how bizarre it was that I was not in a relationship. The disbelief stemmed from their belief that I was someone who offered much to a potential partner and should be snatched up immediately. Of course, nothing about my own preferences for a partner filtered into the scenario, and it was said to me that I could not set too high a set of standards if I wanted to be coupled. The repetition of this message eventually wore me down making me vulnerable to external advice that didn’t see me as an actor with agency.

The outcome of this was that I entered into a relationship with a friend who was in love with me, and placated myself with the delusion that I was happy to be loved. Whom I loved and wanted to be in a relationship with didn’t matter. Under my leadership and financial favour, we tried to build a home, which incurred debt on my name. Of course, the relationship didn’t last, but the debt did. I knew that was not a relationship meant for me and that it was doomed to failure, but I was seduced by the opportunity to fit in – an opportunity completely orchestrated from the outside.

Since then, I have paid many prices for appeasing people at the expense of my intuition, but finally, when I looked around me and those who were but fleeting onlookers had gone, I had nobody to rely on besides myself. Not for a lack of caring people, but because my experiences had prepared me to understand myself and what is good for me in a way that one could not grasp from the outside. My next assignment would be to learn how to say no without explanation. Importantly, it was not that I was withholding an explanation, but that I simply had none, because my ‘no’ was coming from a place that wouldn’t even explain it to me. I had to make peace with not knowing, but simply feeling. I had to grow into it.

These days, I don’t give my inner ‘no’ or ‘yes’ a second guess. I received a ‘no’ as I pulled up to a venue, and simply turned around and went home. The wisdom in my decisions have since always proven itself, when events related to me after the fact showed me how I would have encountered harm if I proceeded.

There may be those who say this is all just up to chance, and perhaps that is true, but since when is taking chances on self-preservation ever to be scoffed at? With all the danger awaiting us in the world, I’d say taking a chance on intuition if a risk is well worth it.