Our Guts Limit Our Options

A lot of us pride ourselves on our ability to make decisions by trusting our guts.

But, have you ever thought about what that phrase really means?

I’m not trying to ruin your appetite.

But “going with your gut” basically suggests that you are relying on your intestines.

All in all, it’s not a very appealing way to go about making important decisions.

It turns out that the nerve cells in our guts are stimulated when our brains release stress hormones in response to an uncomfortable or frightening situation. This causes a physical reaction – the deep-rooted “fight flight, or freeze” response that has enabled us to survive since prehistoric times.

So, our “gut feelings” are certainly worth paying attention to if something seems wrong.

Our gut reactions can help us get out of dangerous situations, jams, and tight spots.

Fair enough. That makes perfect sense.

But it does not make sense to decide we’re going to make important decisions based solely on our gut telling us that something just “feels right.”

Our gut reactions occur for the exact opposite purpose.

If they could, our guts would grab us by the collar and scream that we need a battle plan or an escape hatch.

That is very different from making an informed decision about two or more very attractive possibilities.

Our gut is not the body part we want to call upon for making such refined decisions.

When we are looking for inspiration or to connect with our intuition, we need to look much deeper – into our hearts.

Our hearts can open us up to create new possibilities – by connecting who we are with where we are going.

Our guts connect us with fear, narrowing our options; while our hearts connect us with love, opening new doors.

My simple note of caution is that when your gut says, “Get out of here,” then, by all means, listen.

But, when you don’t have to flee or fight, listen, instead, to the beating sound of your heart.

Feel and reflect upon what you initially believe to be your options.

Certainly, weigh all the information you’ve gathered.

Consider what may be missing.

Be aware of how your experiences and feelings may direct, as well as limit, you.

Seek counsel from those with whom you’ve wisely chosen to surround yourself.

Then leave spaces in between for your subconscious to roam.

And allow the sound of your heart to guide and inspire you.