Your inner voice is calling, can you hear it?
Ask anyone if he has spoken to his inner self, chances are you’d be greeted with a blank look on his face.
It’s an irony. We’re supposed to be intimate with our self, but few of us really are.
Instead of listening to what’s deep in us, we devote our attention to what others say. “Why are people saying that to me? ” “What can’t I be as successful as they are? “
No wonder our inner voice is in such an awful state of neglect. If we give no attention to it, how can it ever be heard? What’s more, since it’s inner, nobody except ourselves knows what it is. So if we don’t listen, no one else can do it on our behalf!
Unlike machinery that reacts to only external commands, as a human being, we’re capable of living a life of our own. If we don’t hear the voice that’s deep in us, how can we ever be ourselves? Isn’t it unfortunate?
Whether we hear it or not, we’re ignoring our inner self at our own peril. Just imagine you realize only at the end of a long and arduous journey that the destination isn’t where you intend to be! It can be devastating.
To save heart-wrenching moments of regret and dismay for missing the ultimate purpose of your life, listen to the voice deep in you. The earlier and more clearly you hear it, the better!
In order to listen to the inner voice, try doing three things.
First, form the habit of looking inward.
Allow yourself the time to speak to your self everyday, even if it’s only a few minutes. For that, the first thing you’d have to do is to give yourself some moments of silence, so that the inner voice would not be submerged in the noises of the external world. Quieten your mind. Instead of talking or listening to others, devote the dialogue to be between yourself and what’s deep in you. No one else!
If you have the habit of doing meditation, this is excellent. You’re already there! If you don’t, do simply nothing. Find yourself somewhere quiet to sit down or take a stroll in the garden. Your inner self will jump at the opportunities to speak to you.
“Empty your mind of all thoughts. Let your heart be at peace. Watch the turmoil of beings, but contemplate their return,” says Lao Tzu in Tao Te Ching.
Second, give your inner voice a chance to be heard.
When you’re faced with any problem, in addition to listening to what your friends, your boss, and your spouse have to say, listen to what’s deep in YOU. Let go of your ego and entrenched thoughts to allow your inner self to come forward.
Your inner voice may not be able to provide you with an answer immediately, but who knows it doesn’t have THE answer? Allowing it time and space, and you’d be surprised what it can reveal to you.
“What difference between yes and no? What difference between success and failure? Must you value what others value, avoid what others avoid?” asks Lao Tzu.
Third, trust your gut feeling.
When your inner voice is crying for your attention, it gives you a hunch. If you ignore it, it persists and may go to the extent of pestering you.
We call this gut feeling. It directs you to something important that has skipped your attention. Many people find it so powerful and stories about how it saves life are bountiful. It’s not always right, but it’s worth your heed. When it emerges, slow yourself down and ask what it has to say. Is there something important or useful that has evaded your attention?
“The Tao is dark and unfathomable. How can it make her radiant? Because she lets it,” says Lao Tzu.
Do this three things frequently enough, and you’d be happy to find a confidante deep in you whom you can rely on to guide you through the journey of life.