How Do You Know When You Know
Moving past intellect and instinct as the source of truth.
Do you ever feel stuck and are not sure why? Last week I wrote about what’s really happening when you feel stuck and how to shift the energy. I highlighted the limits of using intellect or instinct as a way out. Asking yourself “what do I know” can be a useful tool to connect with and allow your intuition to have a voice. Thoughts and feelings, despite the best of intentions, have a tendency to take over and distract us from our awareness. In an attempt to keep us safe, they deny our being–the part of us that perceives, receives and knows.
How do you know when you know?
The first indication that you know is the absense of conflict. You are no longer in a battle with your thoughts or feelings. There is no questioning, judgment or anxiety. Knowing is uncontested. You know when you know because your brain and belly cannot refute the truth of your heart.
You also know when you know when external validation is not needed. You’ll recognize this when other people share their opinions, fears and judgments (and they will) with you. They do not penetrate or stick to you. You know when you know when you see their questions, care and concern as a projection of their own fears. You don’t have to tell them that but are able to articulate your truth with comfort and conviction. Not needing the validation of others confirms that you know. It’s proof that you have not only moved beyond the limits of your own thoughts and feelings, but those of others as well.
How to get to a place of knowing
Realize and accept that you are not your thoughts or feelings. They are mechanisms (aka judgments) to keep you safe (and stuck). It’s part of what makes us human. Don’t punish yourself for having them. They may not even belong to you. Notice when you become hijacked by your thoughts and feelings. Recognize how they are a limited point of view. This awareness is a powerful first step in the process.
Go about the business of living. Work, play, laugh, cry. Be you.
Give yourself a break — weekly or daily. Do nothing or enjoy an activity that feels effortless and/or mindless — it doesn’t matter if it is math puzzles or Frisbee. Get your body and mind lost in something as much as you can. This should not feel like work but if you are uncomfortable with the practice of slowing down or devoting time to yourself, it may feel excruciating at first. Keep at it.
Pay attention. You will start to sense things. Or you will just know things and not know why or how. It may happen while in the shower, driving the car or when pouring a cup of coffee. Be patient. These quite whispers will come between the moments of thinking and feeling. This is you as a being — perceiving, knowing, receiving — existing in the space outside your thoughts and feelings and the falsehoods they present.