Thursday, July 28, 2016

Warning: Ignoring Your Gut Feelings Could Ruin Your Life!

During a recent conversation with my daughter, she told me about a friend of hers who cancelled her wedding just shy of 3 weeks before it was supposed to take place. Drama and lost deposits aside, her decision to cancel impressed me. It had all come down to her deciding not to ignore her gut feelings. Something about the relationship just hadn’t felt right.

Early on in my sales career I accepted a job my gut tried me to warn me about. "Don't do it! There are red flags all over the place!” I didn’t listen. Instead, I ignored my own inner intuition in favor of the logical parts of my brain where all the reasons justifying why I should take the job resided. Needless to say, it wasn’t too long after I started the job that I realized I should have listened to what my gut – instincts, intuition, or whatever you want to call it – had been trying to tell me.

We have gut reactions for a reason. When we get them, our job is to take some time to consider what our gut reaction is trying to get us to pay attention to. Granted, there are times in life when you will make choices that go against your gut. There’s nothing wrong with that, as long as you take the time to try and figure out what and/or why you’re reacting. Below are a few insights meant to remind you of how truly valuable your own internal guidance can be.

Everyone has gut reactions, but they tend to pop up when we’re facing a decision. Our gut could be saying “Yes!” or “No!” because we have gut feelings in both directions. Either way, this reaction to a situation is reason enough to consider what it is that does or doesn’t feel right. If you can identify the cause/source of your reaction, you’ll be in a much better position to make a better decision.

Ignore your gut reactions at your own risk. Your gut instincts, feelings, reactions, and intuitions have one goal – to keep you safe and happy. The problem is that all your gut can do is let you know when your safety and/or happiness might be affected. Your gut can’t tell you what to do. That’s why it pays dividends to pay attention to what it’s trying to tell you. When you do, again, you’re more likely to make better decisions about how to proceed.

Your gut will remind you what’s important to you—even when you aren’t sure what’s important to you. Do you find yourself getting stuck in the same situations over and over again? I’m willing to bet your gut instincts have been working overtime trying to get your attention each time the same less-than-ideal situation comes around. From now on, if you begin to recognize a pattern that isn’t doing you any favors, stop! Is it possible your gut has been trying to inspire you to make a different decision all along?

Most successful people think of their gut instincts and intuition as a gift, and have learned to pay attention to them. That doesn’t mean they make their decisions based solely on those feelings. They use them as an invitation to look deeper into a situation and make sure that the course of action they choose is more likely to be beneficial, meaningful, and possibly even more profitable for them in the long-run.

What have your gut instincts and reactions been trying to tell you lately?

Alan Luoma: I am a Sales Coach with extensive experience in industrial sales, sales management, new

product development, sales and product training. I work with a great national sustainable packaging company and their exceptional distributors to increase sales. My success has been and is in utilizing the Pareto 80/20 principal in business and life. I have become an expert in seeking out and eliminating behaviors that prevent business people from being successful. I am a member of The National Speakers Association and New England Speakers Association. You can view my profile on LinkedIn, or contact me at 

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