This summer my brother and sister in law bought a small power boat.  They thought getting a boat would teach my teenage nephew responsibility.  I got to go on the “maiden voyage”!  It was exciting to see my nephew go from riding his scooter as a toddler to navigating a boat.

There was adventure and a little peril!

There are a lot of rocks to watch out for, many hidden below the surface.  He was cautious even though I could tell he wanted to open up the engine and let her fly.

That’s where the GPS comes in. 

The seller of the boat had driven it around the area and saved some safe routes to the GPS. I watched my nephew keeping an eye on the GPS, my brother following along.  We came to a straightaway between small islands. My brother and nephew checked it out on the GPS and decided it was ok to go through.  Then my nephew hesitated.  He looked uncomfortable.  But he pointed at the GPS screen again and said “ok".

He shifted the throttle and away we went! 

For about 1 minute that is. Until we heard a loud clunking noise and felt the bumps.  The thing we were trying to avoid happened. We hit rocks.  We were fine and there was no damage.  We gave a nervous laugh and promised, “What happens on the boat, stays on the boat.” (No worries, I have permission to share the story :).

But something was nagging at me. 

Why did my nephew hesitate when at the entrance of that straightaway? “What made you hesitate before going through?” I asked.

He said something told him not to go through. 

He felt a gut feeling that there were rocks.  “What made you go anyway?”.  He said he looked at the GPS and assumed since the route was plotted, it must be ok.  He ignored his Inner GPS and put his trust in something outside of himself.

That Inner GPS was his intuition.

He learned later that he was looking at the wrong directional line on the GPS.  He realized if he'd listened to his intuition he would have spoke up and found a different way.  What is so cool is that he is learning to listen to his intuition and more importantly to trust it.

It made me think of how many adults never learn to listen to their intuition. 

People listen to family and friends, which sways them from their intuition.  It’s amazing how you trust what others say before trusting yourself.  How often do you explain away that voice in favor of listening to the latest guru on tv or social media?

How do you know when to trust your intuition (I like to call it your heart-centered compass)?

  1. You feel compassion for yourself and others.
  2. There is a feeling of peace, clarity and knowing.
  3. There is no nervous feeling that something is wrong.
  4. Your body feels as if a weight has lifted.
  5. What felt like a burden now feels like a sense of excitement and relief.

When you need to make a decision or choice, or as a warning signal pops up, try this:

  1. Get quiet – no distractions – close your eyes – be in the moment.
  2. Do not overanalyze – that drowns out intuition.
  3. Consider your options and get in touch with each of the feelings that come up.
  4. Where do you feel pulled?
  5. When you go in that direction how does that feel?
  6. Which option brings peace, relief, and knowing?
  7. Trust that feeling and go in the direction you feel drawn to.

It takes practice but the confidence you build in yourself is amazing!  Give it a try!

In Courage,


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