How can I hear my inner voice?

Posted by Jade Garratt

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Jade is a yoga teacher, blogger and health and wellness geek. Her mission is to share the happiness that yoga has brought into her life. Full Bio
Q:

How can I hear my inner voice?

A:

You might have had people tell you to listen to your inner voice, tune into your internal guidance or channel your intuition. But what happens if your inner voice just doesn’t seem very chatty? Or what if your mind is so noisy with thoughts, ideas and distractions that you really can’t tell which is your inner voice?

Well, first of all, don’t worry! Your inner voice is definitely there, and there’s nothing wrong with you if it’s not easy to hear. It’s completely natural and incredibly common to have so much on your mind that you lose touch with your inner voice. By its very nature, your inner voice is not usually a shouty thing. What we think of as an inner voice is the wisdom and intuition that corresponds to the higher or “observer” part of yourself. That’s the part that sees all of the thoughts and feelings and events that fill our awareness, but is quietly and calmly unaffected. It is witness to everything, but soars above the drama. And so when that part of you speaks through your inner voice, it’s able to give you advice, guidance and direction, which is for your highest good.

And how do you hear your inner voice more clearly? Put simply, through meditation. Thousands of years of practice has shown meditation to be the most effective way for quieting the chatter of your mind. (Learn more in Your Mind Isn't Actually You: How to Quiet the Monkey Chatter.) Meditation allows your inner voice the airspace to be heard. It has the added bonus of helping you to discern between the random, chaotic and sometimes decidedly unwise thoughts that pop into your head, and that truer, more judicious inner voice. A regular, meditation practice will help you over time to gently calm your mind, clearing space for your inner voice. This can give you a wiser perspective throughout your daily life.

If you specifically want your inner voice’s help with a particular question or issue, practicing quiet contemplation may be beneficial. Bring to mind whatever question you would like to answer and gently contemplate it without pressure to answer, but simply quietly observe all the thoughts that come up. Over time, with patient, nonjudgmental contemplation, you may find that one voice emerges as the voice of wisdom, giving you an answer which you know deeply to be for your highest good. Give it time, be patient and accept that not knowing the answer may be exactly where you need to be for now. (Learn more in Patience Really is a Virtue.) When the time is right, the answer will come.

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