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Q
Is Intuition Inborn?
I'm wondering if it would be possible to go into a bit more practical detail on how one might develop intuitiveness. I don't feel I am very intuitive but would like to be. Or is it more a situation of it just being a gift that some have and others don't have to any great degree?
A
Answer (Published 11/1/2004)

Intuition comes from the unconscious mind, so anything that opens channels to your unconscious should facilitate intuitiveness. I believe that we all can become more intuitive - it is more a matter of openness and receptivity than a "gift" you're born with. Almost everyone has occasional "gut" feelings about situations, people or their health. Too often these feelings are written off as meaningless or as wishful thinking, but often they can -and should - be trusted.

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You can tap into your intuition via meditation and breathing practice or just by quieting down so you can be open to thoughts and images from your unconscious. Sometimes, your dreams can reveal the workings of your subconscious mind, so pay attention to any that provide you with fresh insight or a new "take" on a situation that concerns you. A great way to do that is to write down your dreams in a journal as soon as you wake (or tell them to your bed partner or a recorder).

Intuition can also help the healing process if you learn to tap into it. A few years ago, Los Angeles psychiatrist Judith Orloff, M.D. wrote a book called "Dr. Judith Orloff's Guide to Intuitive Healing" in which she listed the steps below as a practical means of harnessing the power of intuition to heal:

  • Notice how your beliefs -- positive or negative attitudes -- affect health.
  • Become attuned to your body so you can pick up early signs of illness.
  • Trust your gut about relationships.
  • Use meditation or visualization to seek inner guidance.

Orloff wrote that she teaches her patients to trust their inner voices as authentic sources of truth and that we all can tap into our intuition. Listen for the voice of your unconscious and pay attention to what it tells you.

Andrew Weil, M.D.

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