How To Trust Your Gut When Your Rambling Mind Won't STFU

by Rosey Baker

Society is confusing AF.

First, you come into it as an unbridled kid full of wonder and Cheerios, and everything you do as a baby — from smiling to burping, to taking a shit — is considered a miracle.

Then, you grow up, and all of a sudden, following your impulses is deeply frowned upon.

Everyone's like, "CALM DOWN, STAY FOCUSED AND BE QUIET. THE WORLD DOESN'T REVOLVE AROUND YOU," even though it literally did for the first five to seven years of your life.

As a result of these mixed messages, we develop a lot of confusion about which part of ourselves we should listen to.

Do we listen to our gut, the part that ruled our lives when we were kids and never led us astray until we started getting punished for it?

Or, do we listen to our head, the part that is always questioning, doubting and playing devil's advocate?

Well, hopefully there's a healthy balance between both.

Although, when reason fails you, or you can't seem to find any, following your gut is always the better option (assuming you're a healthy person who isn't currently a rabid alcoholic).

The main reason we don't follow our gut is because we're worried our base instinct will lead us in the wrong direction.

In fact, only our intellect, which tends to deny our emotions or ignore them, is the cause of most of our mistakes.

Have you ever been in a relationship with a wonderful person, who shows you they care, who is open with their feelings and whom you miss when you're apart?

But for some reason, when you think about telling them you love them, you come crashing into a boulder of doubt?

The reason this happens is because in that gut-driven, free-falling experience of loving someone else, our MIND interrupts our experience.

We start to ask questions like, "What if they don't say it back?" and our emotions respond with fear.

Our minds then interrupt our unpleasant feelings with a very quick fix: DON'T SAY WHAT YOU FEEL.

All of this interference from the mind is in response to an overall sense that what we feel is wrong, and that sharing our feelings will scare everyone around us and eventually lead to dying alone or homeless with no friends.

This isn't true.

Your feelings are your best guide. Even when they scare you, it's important to ask yourself questions so the mind can help you better understand them.

The next time you waver on a feeling, ask yourself instead, "Why does saying I love someone scare me?"

Let's say the answer is, "Because I'm afraid of rejection."

Then, ask yourself, "What would have to be true about rejection to make saying, 'I love you' a genuinely unsafe thing right now?"

What would have to be true is a belief that being rejected by one person makes you somehow unworthy of love, or a raise or a new job.

And the mind will tell you, correctly, that belief is false.

You cannot learn to trust your gut until you examine and get past the fear of your emotions — all of them.

Unless you can tell me, "Every time I've been rejected, it's been at gunpoint," you can't be physically hurt by speaking your feelings and acting on them.

You might hurt emotionally, but emotions are nothing to be afraid of, remember?

The world is a much safer place than you think it's going to be. I promise.

Trust your gut.