Recently I was speaking with a client who talked about her own intuitive powers, and that she would like to know how to develop them further. I believe that we all have intuitive or "psychic" powers. I believe that there was a time in the history of man that we used those powers, or the "sixth sense" just like we currently use the other five. But somewhere along the line, as we came out of the wild and into "civilization" we began to lose touch with that integral part of ourselves. If you look at ancient cultures that still survive in some form today, such as the Native Americans, Polynesians, Celts etc. you find that they still very much believe in a world beyond the physical and have their own ways of being in touch with it. It's a very natural part of their culture.
I think what we call "intuition" is actually the voice of our higher self, or soul, that part of us that is eternal, and as such remembers and knows all things since the beginning of time. It is the "God-spark", that piece of the divine that exists in all of us, and as such is all-knowing, and all-powerful. (See Dr. Wayne Dyer's book "Wishes Fulfilled" for an excellent treatment of this concept.) So if you wish to develop your intuitive connection further, you simply must learn to pay closer attention to this part of yourself. It's always present, but you have likely been ignoring it for so long, you may have to really listen to find it.
Here are the techniques that have helped me to deepen my awareness:
1. Make note of Divine synchronicities. To begin learning to be in tune with your intuition or your higher self, start by paying attention to the little coincidences in your everyday life. When you have a "feeling" and it turns out to be right, or you suddenly think of someone you haven't spoken to in a long time, and then the phone rings and they are on the line. Begin observing these "divine synchronicities", and start to write them down. Making entries in your journal is a perfect way to record your "intuitive hits". The more you notice and document them, the more often they will happen. By becoming more conscious of the occurrences, you are exercising and strengthening your intuitive muscle. By collecting "evidence" that you are able to know things intuitively, you are building a sense of trust in that inner voice.
2. Make time on a regular basis to connect to Spirit. Which is the same thing as connecting to your higher self. Meditation, prayer, sitting quietly in nature, whatever makes you feel connected to your higher power, and thus your soul. By doing this on a regular basis, you are opening the "channel" to allow the information to flow.
3. Make the mind/body/spirit connection. I've found that taking proper care of my body is an important part of cultivating my internal spiritual guidance system. By eating "clean", mostly healthy, organic fruits and vegetables, and eliminating sugar, caffeine and alcohol, I am able to drop into meditation much more quickly and easily, and I am able to "hear" the voice of my inner guide much more clearly.
4. Buy some kind of intuitive card deck. The Tarot is not easy to learn and according to legend, if you are "meant" to read the Tarot, the cards will find their way to you. But there are many wonderful, more simple cards out there now that are usually accompanied by a book that helps translate the meanings. I began with "Rune cards" based on the old Nordic Runes, and my readings (only for myself) were simple, usually either a single card or sometimes 3 cards, for showing the "past, present, future" of a situation. There are angel and archangel cards, Native American spirit guide cards, Goddess cards, etc. The best thing to do is go to a store where they are sold and see which ones you feel drawn to, then take them home and play with them. This is a great way to continue learning and strengthening your abilities.
5. Learn to trust your inner voice. While following these steps you will learn which voice is your intuition, and which is your so-called "rational" mind. When I first began to pay attention to my sense of "knowing", my rational voice would immediately try to over-ride anything my intuition would tell me by shouting "You can't know that!" and "Don't be ridiculous! That's crazy!" Observe this for a while, and then as you start to see that your intuition is ALWAYS right, you can start to say to the rational voice "OK, thanks for your input, now SIT DOWN!"
6. Pay attention to dreams. Particularly very vivid dreams that seem "different" than your usual ones. These are strong messages from your higher self, via your subconscious. I think often this is the way our soul chooses to communicate with us in the beginning, because it is somewhat more acceptable to the rational mind. Immediately upon waking try to remember what you dreamt about, before it slips away. If you are not sure about the meaning, try journaling about it, and start with "The message of this dream was______." Your higher self will help you to fill in the blanks.
7. Watch for signs. I believe signs from Spirit/God/The Universe/Source are all around us. We must open our eyes to them in order to receive. I find heart-shaped things everywhere I go, leafs, clouds, rocks, even spray-painted on the side-walk. Each one serves as a message to reaffirm my belief that Love is the only thing that is real. (I have devoted a whole post to the subject of signs and their many forms- please click here if you're interested:
8. Find like-minded people to talk to. It's important while you are growing your confidence in your intuitive powers that you find other people who think the same way, who have similar experiences to compare notes and to share with. The last thing you need is to talk to some "practical, scientific" type who wants to discourage you from trusting yourself. These people are usually quite fearful of their own inner voices, and will discount yours as a way of denying their own.
9. Learn to journal. Writing your thoughts and feelings down in a private journal, one that you know no one will ever read can be a very therapeutic experience, especially with regards to developing your psychic abilities. Unusual things that occur, and even our thoughts, are not "real" until we either tell someone else, or write it down. Journaling at it's best can be an on-going conversation with our higher self, and with Spirit. If you have never journaled, or need fresh inspiration to get you going, please check out Charlene Geiss, a fantastic diarist and journaling teacher, as well as her book:
10. Read books about intuition and other's experiences with it. Understanding how other people have received information can help you open your own "channel". Here are a couple of good ones:
"Angel Watch- Goosebumps, Signs, Dreams, and Other Divine Nudges" by Catherine Lanigan and "When God Winks at You" by Squire Rushnell.
I truly believe intuition can lead you and guide you, to make decisions, to walk your path, to do the right thing for yourself, and ultimately for everyone whose life you touch. I think we should nurture this voice, encourage it to speak, by carving out some quiet time in our busy lives so we're able to hear it. The bottom line is that we all have these so-called "powers" because we all have souls. It's just a matter of awareness and trust, and those things can be developed!
Much love and light to you on your journey.