The subtitle of my new book, Great Decisions, Perfect Timing, is “Cultivating Intuitive Intelligence.” Accessing intuitive intelligence is the central component of the Visionary Decision Making process: after all, intuition stimulates the impetus to make a decisive move, do nothing at all, or run like hell. Its signal may take the form of a “gut feeling” or a “feeling in your bones,” based on perception associated with the right brain.
Humans have a “triune brain” that consists of the brain stem, the limbic brain, and the neocortex with its right and left hemispheres. Logical problem-solving derives from the left hemisphere, and intuition is a function of the right hemisphere. The two hemispheres are physically identical, but their contents are quite different. In the book Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain, neurobiologist Dr. Roger Sperry notes the two hemispheres are, “two separate realms of conscious awareness; two sensing, perceiving, thinking and remembering systems.” The physical structure of our brain can make it difficult to receive signals from the intuition. The barrage of all the sensory stimuli can be so overwhelming that we don’t perceive (or we misinterpret) the subtle signals from our intuition.
We rely on wireless signals in our smartphones, tablets, and laptops; it has become an indispensable technology. Yet few of us are aware of a delicate wireless connection between the right hemisphere of our brain and what I call the “Infinite Intelligence”—a realm of knowledge that Jung termed “the collective unconscious.” Our intuition is that sixth sense by which we can access this reservoir of knowledge, storing impressions and images in the right brain’s memory. We need the left hemisphere to translate the information that this wireless connection reveals into the form of thoughts, words, and ideas. Our logical, problem-solving brain contains the tools needed to understand intuitive sensations and allows us to formulate a decision to make a move.
But, as I mentioned above, all of the sensory “noise” we deal with every day makes it challenging to access our intuitive intelligence. In addition, fear and strong emotions can greatly interfere with the receptivity of our delicate wireless antenna.
One type of image particularly that helps the left side of the brain make sense of nonverbal impressions is an archetype. For example, one way for the logical mind to translate an intuitive message would be by an archetype showing up in your dreams. An example would be your inner King or Queen appearing in a dream to help you make an important decision that has been pressing upon you. A recurring dream with your inner Sovereign lets you know that a particular situation requires some decisive action.
Intuitive intelligence allows you to identify the risks in life that will grow you. Then, with a modicum of courage, you can commit to them by taking brave action. You will learn from all these risks, even if your ego should later label an outcome a “failure.” But before you have all your good options, you need to A) clear a pathway for signals that can be picked up by your intuitive antenna and B) execute a decision with good timing.