Wisdom//

Have You Listened to Yourself Lately

The inner voice can be a good teacher too.

Photo by Jen Theodore/ Unsplash
Photo by Jen Theodore/ Unsplash

My father was in the police services and throughout his career and even today, the one learning he wants me to master is the skill of observation through all the senses, instead of just one. Often we tend to believe what we hear from others, and base our opinions solely on that. Or we see something, and are quick to judge the situation, since we are programmed to believe that our eyes won’t lie to us. This makes us impervious to the bigger picture as we have based our inferences only through one external medium which quite often is biased. Instead, if we learn to observe by focusing all our senses on the situation at hand, we find our inner voice, guiding us to the solution. This is what people call being guided through the gut, or through intuition, or consciousness, or through pure accidental genius. 

There have been various instances in my life when I have felt something, a voice in my head, and whatever it said turned out to be true. I’m sure something similar must have happened to many people out there. It made me wonder, how does it happen and why? One of my theories is that, if you are a keen observer, assimilating lot of information on a non-reactive basis, meeting people on a non-judgmental basis, are able to look at problems without getting flustered and lastly, able to tune yourself to be a good human being with a calm mind, you will be surprised to see that lot of solutions come to you at the right moment without much of an effort. It’s like the way it used to happen in school, we would struggle with a mathematics problem and once we take a nap, the solution to that problem would come to us automatically. The message here is not that sleeping is a solution, but the fact that sleeping helps calm your mind. 

We underestimate the power of our mind, it’s an amazing, unimaginable, complex system/machine. Today, we talk about Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) and get super excited with their results, but I think that is just scratching the surface in terms of the AI and ML we have in our brain. The way our brain puts the data we have assimilated together over the years, compounds it and throws a solution without us forcing it to think too much is truly amazing. 

However, we do not always get answers from it. Why is that the case? My understanding has been that, when the mind is calm and when we are comfortable being with ourselves and looking inwards, the solution comes to us. The machine that we have is amazing, it is much more advanced than any AI, ML. 

We need to combine the data we assimilate through technology and the data of our internal system (our brain) gathered through experiences and observations to come up with solutions

So, do we charge this machine enough? Do we give it required space? Or do we just bombard it and confuse it with a lot of things at a time? It’s like your laptop, when you try doing too many things together, it may stop responding or respond very slowly till we have to shut off various processes/apps or in the worst case scenario, restart it. Something similar happens to our brain when we are stressed, over-thinking or in a panic mode. Our brain is unable to assimilate the right data and hence, stops sending signals at the right time. Hence, we need to work towards decluttering all that’s there in our brain and sharpen our focus by giving it necessary rest that it deserves. It can be done by calming your mind through meditation or doing anything that helps you relax. This brings in clarity of thought and you are able to find solutions, rather than running around in all the chaos.

Fundamentally, I believe that we need to combine the data we assimilate through technology and the data of our internal system (our brain) gathered through experiences and observations to come up with solutions, which will be very beneficial not only on an individual level, but also for the society at large. 

For this to work,  we need to learn to ‘listen’ to this machine clearly, out of the blue a buzzer won’t start playing in your head if you are making a wrong decision. You need to trust yourself and have patience to develop these instincts, by cutting the noise around.

The key here is to not be flustered, but to stay calm and this internal system will automatically start helping you in various life situations. With this internal system as a teacher by your side, it’s tough to fail in anything in your life, and even if you do, you will learn from it and that will take you to the path of success.

Believe in yourself, be yourself and be calm come what may. Be open to learning because all your experiences, based on your interactions with people and observations, will take you to the next level and help in evolving this inner voice. Thus, contributing towards your personal growth and making you a stronger person. There will be many teachers at various stages in your life, but this inner voice will stay with you forever, guiding you to the right direction and trust me, it won’t let you down. 

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- Marcus Aurelius

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