Jackie Jarvis Business Mentor and Author of the soon to be published book
“Quick Wins in Sales and Marketing for Ambitious Business Owners” gives you a taste of one of the 50 Quick Wins – ‘Trust Your Instincts’
I was talking to one of my clients Anne Marie Payne of Nobull Communication (www.nobull-communications.co.uk) the other day, on the subject of instinct and she said to me that whenever she has not listened to that inner voice things have gone wrong. She was saying how important it is, to her business, to start to trust her instincts enough to listen and take action.
So this Quick Win is highly relevant to us all who have had the experience of our instincts trying to speak and being too busy to listen.
Trust your instincts
‘Listen to your instincts – they are trying to tell you something important.’
Instincts can be described as a gut reaction or inner feeling that goes beyond logic or facts. Sometimes you can feel that something is not quite right but are unable to explain it logically. Or you may have a sense that something or someone is right, but can’t back it up with facts and figures.
Your instincts are like an inner voice that comes from deep within and that seems to know what the best course of action is. Think of it as your instincts trying to protect you.
Everyone will have experienced the feeling of being about to undertake a certain course of action, then hearing an inner voice telling them not to do it. Likewise, you will probably have had the feeling of something being just right, moved heaven and earth to make it happen, and been proved spot on with the risk you took. However, we tend to dwell on our failures, not our successes, hence the well-known phrase ‘I should have trusted my instincts’.
Our inner wisdom often knows more than we give it credit for, so if you don’t pay attention to it, you may miss important information. Your instinct can be drowned out by too much noise or other distractions, and equally it can be brought alive by peace and space.
I notice the difference when I give myself that space and time, at the beginning or end of a busy day, to connect with my instinct. For me it can be a morning run, a bike ride, an evening meditation or a quiet walk by the river. When I relax, my inner voice usually comes to me and sheds light on whatever it is that needs clarifying.
When was the last time your instinct gave you a strong message?
What was the result?
Accessing the power of your instinct is all about trust. You need to give yourself space, turn down the volume of your own inner chatter, and allow your own wisdom to be heard.
The more able you are to free your mind from the constant ‘busyness’ which keeps it occupied, the more likely you are to hear your inner voice inside that might have something important you need to hear.
Your instinct is a feeling, a knowing; something in the pit of your stomach that tells you something is right or not right. Give yourself time to feel. Don’t make yourself so busy that you lose all sensation.
Take time out to connect with nature. Go for a walk, a run, a cycle ride. Or simply sit somewhere quiet and enjoy the silence. Take some deep breaths and let go of all the stress of the day. Enjoy just being and doing nothing, even if it is only for half an hour.
You will be surprised at the positive effect something this simple can have on your ability to connect properly with your instincts.
We are not machines and we can’t just keep running and running without care and attention. Your soul needs nurturing as much as your customers need serving.
Take care of your instinct, and it will reward you with its wisdom.
I have had a number of experiences in my life when I have ignored my instincts, only to find that the warnings they gave me came true in the end. I remember being about to embark on a business relationship with a partner, to work on a project for which I had a lot of passion. I heard a voice at the time saying this was the wrong move for me, but I ignored it because on paper there were a number of very positive things in the relationship’s favour.
Sadly the project didn’t take off, but I wasn’t entirely surprised as I never really felt that my partner and I had the right relationship. If I had listened to my instincts, I would have avoided a lot of wasted time and effort going down a road that wasn’t right for me. I learnt a lot from that mistake.
One year after that experience, I was offered help in my business from the partner of one my trusted colleagues. However, at our first meeting I wasn’t sure that I connected with him that much, despite the fact he was a very intelligent and experienced businessman. I was quite negative and defensive at the time, as I was still sore from the previous business relationship that had gone wrong. I wasn’t sure I wanted any help. I remember going home that evening, standing on my courtyard and looking up at the neighbouring church spire, asking myself what I should do. My instinct said ‘see him again, but be open about your concerns’. I tried to argue with myself but my instinct won through.
On the second meeting I got to know him better and I saw things that I had missed the first time round. I ended up taking up his offer of some business advice and mentoring and now he is one of my partners in Heart of Business. He is very different from me in many ways, we do complement each other’s strengths and he has been great to work with. That is one experience where I could easily have walked away, but am glad that I listened to my instinct.
Make a decision to listen to your instinct for a week.
Give yourself a bit of space and time to access it.
Write down some of the messages you get.
If you have enjoyed reading this sample chapter and would like to pre order a personally signed copy of this book when it is published by ‘Little and Brown’ 2nd April 2015 email firstname.lastname@example.org The book will cost £8.99 plus postage and packing.
To read more about Jackie Jarvis go to http://www.heart-of-business.co.uk/jackie-jarvis-mentor-profile.html
I will be sharing further chapters of this book over the coming months in the lead up to the launch in April 2015, so watch this space…