Three ways to strengthen your intuition for decision making


Intuition, combined with intellect, makes a stronger decision than intellect alone. When you are making an important decision, turn on your intuition to notice something that might inform you at a deeper level than intellectual thought.

Our senses are bombarded every day in our modern life with media messages and information overload. If you rely solely on externals to make decisions, you might not be serving your higher needs. Developing a strong intuitive sense of inner guidance will help you more easily navigate changes in your life.

People sense intuition in various ways depending on their preferred learning style. You might experience a sudden insight or knowingness, a thought, a feeling in the heart or the gut, or a kinesthetic body reaction as your preferred doorway to intuition. My insights often come as an awareness or a feeling — often in the shower or while washing the dishes. When I try to think about the awareness, my mind takes over to translate the idea into words.

Take note when your intuition fails you so that you can fine tune your intuitive skills. You improve your intuitive abilities through practice and by listening to your internal guidance system. Learning to discern the still, small voice of intuition over the ego’s mind chatter will bring you peace.

Some people have a more natural aptitude for sensing their intuition, just like some people have a more natural aptitude for mathematics or for throwing a ball. However, you can develop and strengthen an internal language of intuition through practice and by paying attention to your body, mind and spirit. You can take action steps through your intellect, to create an environment where your intuition can thrive.

Use these three body-based steps to strengthen and fine-tune your intuition:

• Pay attention to your nutrition — Your body, mind and spirit are your instruments for intuition to pass through. Fine tune and polish your instrument — your physical body — by upgrading your nutrition. Put high-quality fuel in your body for maximum intuitive performance.

To get ready for the day, gently cleanse your liver by drinking a glass of water with fresh-squeezed, organic lemon juice every morning. Opt for eggs and whole-grain toast rather than a pastry and latté for breakfast. Lean toward whole foods over processed foods, the fresher the better. Instead of a boxed dinner with a high-sodium, MSG-laden, spice packet or a canned soup, go the extra mile to make chicken breast, wild rice and stir-fried veggies. You are worth it!

Choose healthy, less-processed snacks like nuts and fruit over chips and chocolate. (Gasp! I am a recovering chocolate addict, and sometimes fall off the wagon.) Even if you occasionally fall off the wagon, remain steady in the direction you are heading — toward more nutrient dense, life-sustaining, whole foods and a healthier, more vibrant body, mind and spirit.

• Physically move your body — Physical bodies are electromagnetic fields of energy. Raising the level of energy vibration in one area of your life, such as physical movement or nutrition, will raise the energy vibration in the whole field.

So how do you like to move? What do you need to have in place to keep you actively moving? Getting a big dog that you need to walk every day might get you moving, but it might also create a bigger commitment than you want. Instead, perhaps commit to movement with a walking buddy, a dance partner or an exercise cohort. Pre-pay for a movement class, so that you will actually go to the class. Go to what you know or try something new: Yoga, T’ai Chi, Zumba, aerobics, Latin dancing, adult ballet — whatever gets energy flowing through your body.

You could simply decide to recommit to your own discipline. I use a set of free weights several times a week and practice what I call body-soul movement. I create a sacred, quiet space that usually includes different types of music. Then, I tune in to my body wisdom and observe how my body wants to move at that time. I give my body permission to inform me about tightness or where I am holding on. Oftentimes, while in Body-Soul Movement, I receive intuitive understandings about the next right decision.

• Notice where emotions stay stuck in your body — Your physical and mental bodies sometimes become entangled with emotions that make decisions more challenging. Maintenance of your emotional instrument also will serve your intuitive decision-making capabilities.

Notice, for instance, that when you think of a work situation, you get a tightness in your gut. In that situation, your body is informing you about an unprocessed emotion.

Many people carry the weight of the world on their shoulders resulting in tension headaches and increased stress from the pain of tight muscles. Is your neck informing you that someone in your life is a “pain in the neck?” What are your jaws telling you about anger that you need to express? Is constipation caused by being “all knotted up” inside?

Try talking to the knot in your gut, the pain in your neck, or the ache in your heart. What is it trying to tell you? Ask the wise part of yourself what you can learn from the pain. Breathe into the knot, the pain or the ache. Then listen. Deeply. Listen with your whole heart. Let go of needing an answer.

Let go of your need to be right about that person who is a pain in the neck. Being right justifies holding on to your pain. What if the other person was right, too, from their perspective? What if, by listening to your body, you came to a sense of awareness about what the pain could teach you?

Years ago, I held on to a horrendously painful knot in my right shoulder for many months. Nothing I or my massage therapist did could get rid of that knot. Then finally, one day, during a massage, I opened my heart to my intuitive wisdom and reached the roots of resentment that I had been holding onto for so long. By the next day, the knot had almost disappeared.

When I am open and listening to its wisdom, my body still informs me. Today, I rub my sore thumb joint and ask what I need to know about this pain. I understand that I am “gripping the steering wheel of life” and that I need to relax and allow life’s good to flow through me. Sigh. Sounds pretty wise. Maybe I could lighten up a little.

When you put quality fuel into your body, move to increase your body’s energy flow, and clean out the sludge of old emotions, you are building a strong foundation for strengthening intuition. Trusting your intuition to make decisions may not happen over night. However, with practice and attention to your body, mind, spirit, strengthening your intuition will help you make decisions in uncertain times.

Leah Skurdal teaches Intuitive Development classes, and offers Intuitive Massage and Energy Healing at The Wellness Circle, in Lino Lakes, MN. Leah’s 4-session workshop, Strengthening Your Intuition, runs Wednesdays, March 7, 14, 21, 28, from 9:30-11 a.m. Pre-registration is required. The workshop costs $100 and includes a one-hour massage and energy healing session with Leah.


  1. Great article! I particularly appreciated the concept of pain being a place where we are “holding on” to something … resentment or perhaps a wound we are “protecting.” And the stumbling block in truly healing these places, as you explain, is that we must be willing to release at all these levels: physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. As much as I love meditation, I usually start with physical release (typically massage and/or exercise), because if my body is telling me I’m in pain, it’s a bit difficult to reach these other levels. Once my body begins to feel a bit more relaxed and safe, I usually begin to breathe very gently into the “hurt” place … breathing in light and breathing out any emotional tension. This starts to bring “balance” to this place. If it’s a particularly deep or primal wound, I find that I may need to just “hold” light and compassion around the hurt place for some time before it begins to feel “okay” enough to want to communicate with me. Often I discover that this wounded place feels shame or bitterness or rage … which amounts to an “unwillingness” to release the pain. If I can’t overcome this with my own compassion and acceptance, I align this place with “divine” love. I gently meditate “to” this place and gently “draw in” that sense of deep warmth and higher love. Patience is required throughout this process … but if you hold it long enough, love will always displace pain.


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