Before writing this post, I was reading different articles related with intuition. They were helpful, but then I realized that only by listening to my own intuition, I would be able to write about it. Kind of paradoxical, isn’t it? My intuition was telling me: tell about your experience. So that was what I did.
I started thinking in which situations I was listening my intuition and in those when I wasn’t. First thing on my mind was about my career election.
When I graduated from high school, many, many years ago (the years here don’t count for the purpose of the post), my grades were decent in many different areas. But I didn’t have a clue what I wanted to be in the future. I was in the humanist section (in Chile they divided the students in three areas: humanist, math and scientific), because I really loved literature, and I feel that I was quite good writing, but I never pictured myself as a writer.
I was very lost. I had fear of choosing a career which will end with me unemployed and broke. With all these doubts, I ended up choosing a plan called “Bachillerato” (which is equivalent to US college). In Bachillerato, you can take courses from different majors, until you decide which was the one right for you.
Away from home, an full of existential and vocational doubts, I withdrew from Bachillerato the first year. After that, frustrated and self defeated, I just took the whole year as sabbatical. I wanted to think more of what I really want and prepare to PSU exam (the equivalent of SAT ). After much thought I decided that I wanted to help people, but also I wanted to have a job with a steady and good income. So I chose to be a Psychiatrist and I enrolled in Medicine. It was terrible. I hated most of my med courses. My grades were horrible and I failed. In this period, also I was going through a depression. I felt lonely, hopeless, and lost. I returned to my parents home, again.
I knew that been my third try to choose my career, this time I really had to do it right. So I went back to the basics.I tried to avoid all the thinking that made me choose badly, in the first place. Meaning I just didn’t give too much importance to:
- My career has to be lucrative. I decided that I would rather to prefer be a happy writer or psychologist, instead of a unhappy surgeon or trade broker.
- I had to choose based on what I am good to do: I was very good at math, but I hated them. So when I was depressed I failed all my math courses.
- I had to listen people who loves me. I realized that even when people who loves you, wants the best for you, some of their advises are not applicable to your life. Their opinion is based on their experience, but your essence and life are unique. What it works for one person, simply don’t work for other.
- Time is running out, so I had to hurry. I started counting years, and calculated my future based on that. Nothing of that happened. And the pressure that I put on my decision, just made me choose wrong options.
On the other hand these are the things that I really focused on:
- What was my passion? What I really wanted to do with my life? What activity I enjoy doing the most and what topic I love to study?
- In order to answer the questions mentioned, I needed to have peace of mind and turn off all the noise.
All these action finally worked, because now I love what I do (even with the awful positions and companies).
Translating my experience to in practical points, I can say that I learned to listen more my intuition by:
- Not listen to other’s opinions but following my inner feelings.
- Not supporting my decision only in the things that I do well. Usually what we loved to do, also coincides with what we are talented.
- Recognizing when my fear is paralyzing me and impeding my intuitive voice to be heard (for example, psychologist starve or have to live with their parents).
- Making time to achieve calmness and relaxation, in order to really listen the inner voice.
- Making the right questions first. For example, what I enjoy doing for hours without been bored or overwhelmed?
I would had loved, knowing all this just finishing high school.
But schools don’t help too much on these things.
Maybe with more help of my school or good counselors, I would have saved time and money in all the back and forth in my career decisions. On the other hand, I don’t regret any of these experience, because I learned so much from them.