Suzhou Gardens

Trust Your Intuition

In practice and in basic self-defense, it’s important to trust your intuition – about your surroundings, about your circumstances, about those you meet.

When we are in a familiar place, we tend to not be quite so alert. We have seen a few of the people before, we know some of them. Consider the design of many retail shops, especially franchises. With particular specifications for the building and equipment, the surroundings make us feel like we have been there, even if we haven’t.

Surroundings and circumstances go hand in hand but are quite different. The surroundings are the same – where we are – no matter our circumstances.

Suppose you are in an unfamiliar place. You don’t know your way around, either in the area or with the local people. These are your surroundings.

Your circumstances could be that you have money, have time, and wanted to go discover something you didn’t know.
Your circumstances could be that you have just been robbed and have been dropped off.
Your circumstances could be that you are looking for work and were told there was a company hiring.
There are other options.

How you perceive your surroundings is, in part, determined by your circumstances in being there.

In any case, if you trust your intuition, you will see things differently, perhaps more than other see.

Intuition is not some magical thing. Most children have excellent intuition. They know immediately who they want to sit with and who they would rather avoid at family gatherings. Babies may cry when this relative holds them but sleep peacefully when another relative takes over.

As we get older, we are taught not to use our intuition. It’s just your imagination. It’s nothing. Don’t bother about it. And yet, every so often, it emerges again. Many times, it’s more about observing something. Maybe it’s that one thing that just doesn’t quite fit the expected picture, a small thing. But it causes you to stop for a moment to think about it. Maybe it’s that the picture seems full and complete – everything is just right. It just works.

Intuition is more about engaging our senses and using empathy to gain insights. Sometimes, our intuition may tell us to go ahead. Other times, the message may be that there is something to be concerned about – or even to run away. The small hairs on the back of the neck, an odd sensation – different than expected, and a general sense of alert – not urgent, just paying more attention than otherwise.

Our intuition when meeting others is often masked with polite conversation and the correct social interactions. Whatever the case, these interactions are normally familiar – you have engaged in similar interactions in similar circumstances and situations.

What if that’s not the case? What if everything is unfamiliar? What if you meet someone you don’t know?

Trust your intuition.

The same as an infant or a small child. If the person makes you feel uncomfortable, can you change your surroundings? Can you arrange for another person? What sort of discomfort do you have? There are many more questions you have to ask yourself in order to decide what to do. The details matter and will determine your course of action. But when faced with a choice, how to decide? Trust your intuition.

Terri Morgan
January 19, 2020