As stated in the third habit (Feel Your Feelings), the energy of our spirit is most similar to the energy of our feelings. Because our spirit is not confined in any way by time or space, it sees everything as if it was happening here and now. First feelings and first impressions are our spirit's way of talking directly to us. First feelings are “our gut instinct.”
If someone invites us to a function that is happening three weeks from now, the first feelings we experience when they start talking about the event are our spirit’s preview of how we will feel if we actually go to that function. If we get a warm happy feeling about it, that is our spirit communicating to us that we’re going to have a good time if we go.
Before any bad thing ever happened to us, we got a bad feeling. Chances are we did it anyway. Then when things went bad, we knew they were going to go bad.
If our first feelings are happy or sad as we are hearing about a future event, that’s pretty much how we’re going to feel if we go to that event. Anticipating something with dread is a dead give-a-way. Either way, it’s our spirit giving us priceless information.
Our spirit’s first impressions often only last a second or two—then they are gone. But in that brief span of time, our spirit informed us of what we were about to encounter. The feelings can sometimes be intense, but a couple seconds later they are so gone it’s as if they were never here. Most of us discount them.
Your feelings are more important than anything you think or hear with your ears. If you are paying attention to your feelings as you listen, you can hear a lie, as it is spoken, or the truth of something, even if have never heard it before. Listen with your whole bodymind, not just your ears.
Start becoming aware of your first impressions. Not just about the big things, but in all the moment-to-moment events of everyday life as well. The first feelings you have from one situation to the next lets you avoid life’s bumps and bruises. They also lead you into wonderful situations.
You can become profoundly insightful and face life with progressively enhanced awareness. This enhanced wisdom helps you control your own destiny. Trusting your gut helps you grow spiritually. It is how your intuition develops and matures.
Your first feeling works with people as well as experiences. When you first meet someone, your spirit is taking in the full measure of that woman or man. The first impression you have of them is valuable information you will need later if you have further encounters with them.
When driving somewhere and you have two choices of roads to take, one at a time imagine taking each road. As you travel each road in your imagination, if there is a blockage on that road that you cannot get past, you will not be able to get post it in your visualization. The impressions are always dead-on accurate.
Then visualize taking the other road. Pay attention to how you feel as you visualize taking each potential road. Often one feels jangly and the other feels peaceful. Most of us would rather take a few minutes longer if it means feeling peaceful along the way.
I had an example where I was coming up to Grass Valley from Sacramento. When I visualized taking Highway 49, just past Lake of the Pines I couldn’t go further, even though I visualized it several times. When I imagined going up to Colfax and across Highway 174 to Grass Valley, the journey felt peaceful and absent of traffic, so I went that way.
Later I learned that there was a terrible accident just past Lake of the Pines and Highway 49 was closed for three hours so a med-evac helicopter could take injured people away from an accident. I would have definitely been stuck in that traffic. I have also had some wonderful adventures as a result of this way of choosing.
When my wife and I are driving somewhere and looking for somewhere to eat, I physical look at every restaurant we pass. The way my gut instinct works in this situation is: When I look at a passing restaurant and my mouth waters, that’s my gut saying “this is the place!” Over the years, we have discovered some real gems. A couple of them didn’t look that promising from the street, my wife saying "Here!!!?"
Also, when choosing menu items in a restaurant I have never been to before, I imagine putting possible choices in front of me and see how my heart feels about them. If three of them make my heart feel happy, then I imagine there are only the three choices. Then as I put each of the three remaining plates in front of me in my imagination, usually only one them makes my heart feel happy. This way of choosing has never disappointed me.
You probably have stories about your gut instinct leading you out of situations that later went real bad. Trusting your gut provides you with enhanced wisdom about what’s going on in your life. It’s a learning curve that takes your whole life to master. Every year you can trust your gut in ever more subtle everyday decisions.
A good rule is: Never allow your brain to talk you out of a first feeling. About anything! Every time you do, you pay dearly. It’s alright to commission your mind to investigate why you had that first feeling, but never to talk you out of it. This rule lets you observe mysteries of life that might otherwise have passed by without your conscious awareness of them.
Your first impressions are like precious gems. Every year you can further enhance your intuition, gaining true wisdom in the process.