I read once that your gut feeling is the sum total of everything – everything you know, everything you’ve ever been taught and everything you’ve ever experienced – boiled down to a yes/no, right/wrong choice and impetus to act. I absolutely agree.Recognising:Recognising there is an issue is a critical skill. You don’t even need to know what the issue is, you only need to recognise that there is one.For me it’s a gut feeling of anxiety, butterflies, nerves or even sometimes a physical reaction (sweats, shaking hands, etc) to an interaction or a situation, which says “something isn’t right here”.It’s a physical indicator of your intuition and is enormously powerful and informative. It varies dramatically in intensity – from “hmmmm – not so sure about that” to “if I don’t do something about this I’m going to explode”.Recognition can be trained with time and practice.Questioning:Once you’ve recognised there is an issue, you can analyse it by questioning:
- What am I feeling nervous about?
- Why did that situation make me feel uncomfortable?
- What is it that didn’t sit well with me?
Choosing: Based on the intensity of your gut feeling and tempered by the answers to your questioning, you can choose how you act.This is a critical point.You can choose how you act.You can choose to confront, let it slide, do something, do nothing, ask for help, draw a line in the sand, run, fight, hide…Then you can choose when to act – immediately, in an hour’s time, in a day, if it happens again.Just remember that not choosing is a choice too.Finding a resolution:This is not about problem solving – that’s up to you and how you work best. It’s about the steps that lead up to it.A genuine resolution might come immediately or it might take hours, days, weeks, months, years.You’ll know when you find one because that very same feeling in your gut – the anxiety, nerves, butterflies, whatever it is – will vanish. You’ll know you’ve found a resolution.With choice comes the responsibility for outcomes. Positive or negative.But at least you got to choose.