How do you know
if it’s your intuition or your lizard speaking to you?
In an earlier post, I discussed rabbits. This week, it’s lizards. Soon we’ll have a zoo.
Here’s how you know if it’s your lizard or your intuition speaking:
- The reptilian part of our brain, or our lizard, has one job… to keep us on high alert so we don’t fall prey to a predator or starvation. Our lizard talks through fear to keep us fed and safe.
- An intuitive hunch is a gut reaction, a whisper from the Universe, or a knowing that something is innately right or wrong without reasoning or judgment. Listening to your essential self speak and following your intuition is liberating to the soul.
Our lizards react to our intuitive instincts. If your intuition is leading you outside of your comfort zone, lizard fears are almost inevitable.
- So… Picking up where we left off with the rabbits: What if you have followed your intuition, have a wonderful life… and then realize ten days or ten years later that something isn’t right? What if you hear a calling to do something radically different than the life you worked so hard to create?
The first step: don’t freak out.
Your lizard might think it’s necessary. It isn’t.
Listen to what your essential self has to say and process the message. Advise your lizard that no action is necessary at this point and thank her for her concern.
Living in a snow globe
This is where that journal I found from last year comes in. I really had no socially valid reason to be dissatisfied. However, a little over a year ago, I woke up to the suffocating image that I was trapped in a snow globe. Here are some of my entries:
April 2008 – Early morning: Now I have to go to work. I love my corner office with windows. In the winter when it snows, it feels like I’m in a snow globe. Right now (if I were sitting at my desk), there’s a dogwood blooming outside the window to my right. If the windows opened, I could touch the blooms. Outside of the window in front of me, a pair of gray and red birds is building a nest. I can’t see the nest because it’s under a branch. But I can see them flying in and out, bringing twigs and other stuff. If I could open that window, I could lean out and see the nest about 5 feet away.
Come to think of it…
A snow globe is a great metaphor.
I can’t open those windows.
I can look out into the beauty of the world… but not touch it. I suddenly feel trapped, restless and in an environment that is unnatural and unsafe.
I want out of the snow globe.
I want the snow to land on my head and I want to sit under the tree and watch the birds. Today, after a few less-than-joy-filled meetings… I will start devising my exit plan.
On the way to work, the emotion of writing about the snow globe effect overwhelmed me and I started to cry. My first reaction was to reach for the anti-anxiety meds. I stopped, though, realizing that this is an ingrained reaction to dealing with raw emotion and fear. I stuff it down or snuff it out. I don’t want to feel the emotions. This emotion is spawned from the joy of listening to my true self and allowing it to speak. It’s annoyance over having to go to a meeting and pretend like I care. My life is not bad… but I might choose to replace it with something better. I let myself cry and feel the feelings. I did not touch the pill bottle.
I am now in the meeting. I do care… but I care with a plan to leave this a better place than when I got here 9 ½ years ago. This will have been a better place for me being here. I will leave here at peace with the job I did and with a graceful exit.
What fascinates me the most is how VERY clear the message was at the beginning and end of the day. Slap in the middle, my lizard came out to play. I can hear her now:
“Are you crazy? The snow globe is safe. Take a Xanax and you’ll be calm, rational and able to go work. You’ve worked all your life in this industry. This is who you are and what you do. ”
Thank goodness I didn’t listen to her!
Instead, after sitting through the day of revelation, slightly claustrophobic panic, lizard fears, annoyance, and sadness, came what appears to have been peace. Peace and a vision to create options. By not freaking out, I was able to hear my way out of the snow globe and count the blessings of my past.
If I had chosen to ignore my intuition, indulge my lizard, and shut my essential self up by medicating her, I wouldn’t have been able to think so clearly. The nagging sense of “not right” might have manifested into stress and anxiety over who knows what.
If you stumble upon the realization that you’re stuck, don’t let your lizard misguide you. Pause, feel the emotion, listen to any intuitive messages, and write about it. Walk with a friend and talk about it. Leave a comment and let’s compare notes.
In Truth & With Love,
Originally published June 3, 2009