trust your instincts

When To Trust Your Gut Feeling and Follow Your Intuition

You’ve probably experienced having a hunch or a gut feeling at some time in your life. Maybe someone immediately imposed a negative sense, or you felt an uncontrollable impulse to avoid an event.

Trusting your gut means heeding the physical feelings your body provides to indicate whether you are making the right or wrong decision. But what exactly are gut instincts or gut feelings? And should we always believe them?

trust intuition

It’s one of the most popular pieces of expert advice when facing a significant decision-making situation: “Follow your gut”, refers to trusting your intuition or instincts, frequently as an example of remaining true to yourself. However, it is a challenging method to apply constantly. 

Now, in this article, let’s take a closer look at trusting your gut, how it feels, when you must have extra information to back up your judgment, and how your gut can help you make better decisions. Read on to learn more!

What Is A Gut Feeling?

always trust your gut

Guts are feelings of intuition, and they occur inside your body, its ability to quickly grasp something without conscious deliberation, and it’s difficult to articulate their precise source or significance to others.

Intuitions remain personal, and nobody else can fully comprehend the scope of your gut feeling. You must deal with it on your own. Trusting your gut or intuition is a demonstration of self-trust.

When dealing with adverse circumstances and relationships, one of the most common instances is where your gut feeling occurs. It’s frequently challenging to specify why someone makes you uncomfortable, for example, on a bad date or in a one-on-one encounter with someone with a troublesome or unsafe aura.

It’s more likely to receive messages your senses detect, but your conscious mind doesn’t. Those cues develop in your stomach and alert you to the fact that something is wrong. That’s your gut talking to you, however, is not merely a bad ‘warning flag’ kind of intuition; it is also suitable for creative thinking.

How Does A Gut Feeling or Intuition Occur?

trust your instincts

Patterns in our past experiences trigger gut feelings or intuitions. Not just while you’re sleeping, but even when you’re awake, your subconscious mind constantly processes details you’re not consciously aware of. 

This helps clarify the “aha” moments when you see, feel, hear, or discover things you already know. The obvious is revealed when your conscious mind suddenly learns something that your subconscious mind previously knew. When a set of events or stimuli is repeated, your brain utilizes these memories of past encounters to predict what will happen next. 

Gut feelings or intuitions develop when your brain detects a significant similarity or mismatch between previous and present events. We notice patterns that stem from previous experiences, and we retain these patterns and related details in long-term memory, from which we retrieve the details when we encounter similar patterns once again in our daily lives. 

We may imagine these patterns as rows of info filling a never-ending spreadsheet. The patterns, or pieces of details we detect across comparable circumstances, are shown in the left-hand columns. 

In the right-hand columns, we find additional details such as results, expectations, appropriate aims, and anticipated behaviors, which we have come to identify with those patterns. When we see one of these patterns (or anything similar), our brain looks it up in the spreadsheet and provides relevant outcome details.

“Follow Your Gut” What Exactly Does It Mean? 

These gut reactions develop throughout time and are influenced by prior experiences. A terrible breakup, for example, may modify your intuitive reaction to shield you from hurt.

You may feel strongly that every relationship following that tough one will fail, regardless of how realistic it may be. 

This sort of projection might prevent you from entering into any relationship, good or bad. So, to make a decision, we must be able to detect and analyze our gut responses.

Gut Feeling: How Does It Feel Like?

follow your intuition

Have you ever felt a nagging feeling about something or a certain situation? Have you ever been wary of someone you’ve just met? You can’t put your sentiments into words, but you’re confident that something isn’t right. Perhaps a surge of affirmation or calmness washes over you after making a difficult choice, telling you you’re choosing what’s right.

Gut feelings may elicit various experiences, some of which are similar to the physical sensations associated with worry. Other, more pleasant feelings may seem to reinforce your intuitive decision-making.

Some individuals describe gut sensations as a little inner voice, but you’ll commonly “hear” your gut communicating with you in different ways.

Gut Feeling And Intuition Signs

Many individuals consider gut feeling or intuition as their sixth sense. Intuition, like your other senses, may generate the following physical symptoms in your body:

  • A flash of insight
  • Stiffness or tension in your body
  • Shivers or prickling sensations
  • Nausea or stomach butterflies
  • A feeling of sinking in the pit of your stomach
  • Sweating palms or feet 
  • Thoughts that recur in a particular person or circumstance
  • Sentiments of security, safety, or contentment (after an important decision)

These sentiments tend to strike unexpectedly, albeit they aren’t necessarily intense or overpowering. They may be as subtle as a whisper or a vague sense of uneasiness, or they could be so powerful that you can’t fathom ignoring them.

If it feels like your brain is pushing you to pay attention to these sensations, you’re not far off the mark.

(Source: Verywell Mind)

When Is It Time to Trust Your Gut?

Gut feelings are extremely genuine things that are based on observation and experience. However, you may not wish to rely on them for every decision. Here are a few examples of when you should use your intuition or go with your gut feeling.

As Soon as You Can Discern Them from Wishful Thinking

Wishful thinking occurs when you desire something so deeply that you begin to think it will happen. Let’s say you’ve desired to write a book but only have a couple of chapters completed. But you have a gut feeling that your work is strong enough to capture the interest of an editor.

You persuade yourself that they’ll answer quickly, hungry for more. When you explain that you’re trying to squeeze writing in with the demands of everyday life, they’ll give you a cash advance so you can concentrate on your novel.

Finally, you distribute the chapters and begin composing a resignation letter for your job. It’s tough to trust your intuition when you don’t have any experience to back it up—your ambition to get published clashes with relatively few first-time writers being compensated to complete a book.

When It’s Time to Make an Immediate Decision

trust your intuition

There are instances when you lack the time to deliberate on whether or not to trust your gut. You just must make an immediate decision. Experts believe the richness of experience stored in your brain might help you make a speedy decision. 

Sometimes, you’ll want to assess your selections, compare reviews, or acquire as much available information as possible. However, in other cases, you might lack much time to think.

Let’s say you’re searching for a place to live. The area seems excellent, the building is peaceful, and the flat is stunning. You like it, but you’d want to spend more time examining any faults or drawbacks before deciding.

“It’s yours if you’re interested in it,” the owner states as you end your tour, “but I have four others waiting, so I only have a few minutes to decide.”

Once your gut tells you, “Yes! You may rent it. This is the spot!” you should probably listen. However, assuming this is your first time selecting an apartment on your own, it may be preferable to get some experience under your belt first.

Whenever You’re Aiming to Connect with Your Needs

follow your gut

Logic and reason won’t always contend with a person’s intuitive feelings and comprehension of their needs. After all, you are the one who is most familiar with yourself.

You don’t want to attend a friend’s birthday celebration tomorrow. You’re weary and exhausted, and a noisy, packed environment seems the worst way to spend the day.

Even if you know you’ll probably enjoy yourself when you get there, an inside voice says, “No way.” Skip it if you want (seriously). Tuning to your body may assist you in making decisions that meet your immediate needs.

When You Don’t Have Enough Information

Gut feelings cannot substitute cold, concrete information, yet you may occasionally have facts to examine. Or you might have a few facts or information but not sufficient to determine an answer.

Perhaps you’re debating between two job proposals that seem pretty equal on paper or whether you should go on another date with someone you’re not very fond of. Trust your feelings while you’re making difficult decisions. Any choice you make may have a stronger connection to your sense of self.

When Should You Not Trust Your Gut

trust in your gut

When people claim to have excellent intuition or be exceptional decision-makers, it’s because they’ve worked hard to hone their instincts and frequently choose to go with them. However, it’s not a guarantee that you can make accurate life decisions based on your gut each time.

Unconscious biases regarding individuals or events might result from trusting what your gut is telling you. This is especially difficult when developing personal and professional connections. The belief that persons who are “similar to me” are more suited for a particular position or relationship stems from a reliance on gut sensations. 

A hiring officer, for example, may be unaware that they have a preference or prejudice toward similar persons. However, if neglected, a company or department may swiftly become devoid of diversity at all levels.

The Risks of Trusting Your Gut Over Anything Else

We take dangerous risks when we exaggerate our skill or understanding. This reckless tendency may lead to unwise decisions. Trusting your gut too much may have a negative impact, from investing in failing initiatives and establishing ill-fated businesses to sinking our heels into disagreeable fights. 

Nonetheless, a stunning majority of individuals are overconfident in their skills. Their intuition says so, and there’s little doubt whether their gut is correct or incorrect.

Consider how many of us tackle driving. In one research, 93% of US drivers claimed to be better than the average, despite the reality that only 50% of the general population can be better than the average. You’re likely to join competitions that you lose if you believe you’re superior to the competitors. 

Making successful decisions requires having a more realistic image of your capabilities, based not just on intuition and instincts but also on information.

What’s Happening Between Your Brain and Gut

The gut is an extraordinary body part, and it is the sole organ in the body that has its own nervous system separate from the brain, known as the enteric nervous system. It happens when your brain sends signals to the nerves in your stomach. 

This neurological system operates subconsciously without cognitive input. The stomach has a network of 100 million neurons, as per the American Psychological Association (APA). These neurons provide a unique communication mechanism across the brain and the gut.

This gut-brain connection and communication mechanism permits emotional experiences to come out as gastrointestinal distress. 

It assists the stomach in controlling both physical and mental activities. Thus, the gut manages processes such as learning a new face, remembering it, and generating a mood or sensation in reaction to it.

That is not to imply that gut instinct is not a factor in the decision-making process. It functions more as an informant, assisting your brain in gathering new information and making appropriate decisions.

Final Thoughts

Our gut feelings are tangible representations of our intuition but aren’t always correct. As your spiritual life deepens, you can identify when you’re getting a gut sensation that should be acknowledged with practice and patience.

These sentiments will only get more powerful and apparent with time, and you will feel more prepared to act on them.


What are the drawbacks of gut feeling?

Emotional gut feelings are seldom as precise as intellectual ones. This is because emotions may obscure our judgment and drive us to make rash judgments that we afterward regret. It’s better to take a moment to calm down and consider things before deciding if you’re feeling upset about it.

Is the gut feeling always correct?

This question has two answers: yes and no. Your pure intuitions are always accurate, but those tainted by your ideas and emotions may be partly or wholly incorrect. You may learn to examine your intuitive experiences and recognize when they are more likely correct with practice.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *