Going with your gut

Have you ever walked into an interview, that everyone around you was excited about, that you yourself were looking forward to for days, but which ultimately left you with a weird ‘feeling’. A queasiness in your stomach?

I’ve had such an interview. In fact, I interviewed at the same institution thrice and couldn’t seem to shake off that uneasiness. I didn’t know then how important it was to listen to your body. A few weeks later, when I didn’t get the role and felt a huge sense of relief, I understood how much I’d been dreading the job.  Something about it didn’t feel right and luckily, fate had given me an out.

This ‘gut’ feeling, that few call a pit in the tummy, or their second brain, is intuition. Psychology Today defines intuition as a ‘form of knowledge that appears in our consciousness without obvious deliberation.’ In other words, it is stuff you know to do, without knowing how you know it.

Dr. Stephanie Zeller, a Seattle local, is a woman of multitude interests and skills! Outside of being a prosthodontist, she is a writer, podcaster, speaker and coach. Her podcast, Dental Outliers and interview in Titans of Dentistry, is what initially drew me to her work. When I asked Dr. Zeller for a message she would like to pass on to women dentists, I was happy that she addressed intuition.

“At the end of the day always trust your intuition. It might tell you to go the extra mile with a patient, to say something to one of your team members that you’re afraid of saying, to partner with someone or to even leave a practice. Leave your “shoulds” at the door, and no matter your level of experience, trust that there is wisdom deep within you and heed that wisdom. Out of all the women I’ve coached, both in dentistry and outside of it, the one thing that has never let them down is their intuition. Every single person has one. Use it.”

Leave your “shoulds” at the door, and no matter your level of experience, trust that there is wisdom deep within you and heed that wisdom.

How can we tap into our intuition? There are a lot of ways to do this, and all of them start with a decision to dedicate time.

  1. Finding the time to enjoy solitude, be it with waking up an hour or two earlier, writing out ‘morning pages’, reflecting, or meditating for at least 20 minutes. Committing time to focus on yourself is the best decision you can make in your life.
  2. Learning to listen to your mind. For some of us, our anxiety flares in certain manners. It may be a ‘pit in the stomach’, or ‘mouth becoming dry’, or ‘chest feeling tight’. Find out how your body reacts to stress and fear. Accept it and act on it.
  3. Lastly, pay attention to your dreams and to the energy around you. Do you find some people draining you? Do you know of activities that uplift you? Follow positive energies. Easier said than done, right? However, that is the only way we can start to live a life of peace and mindfulness.

If you are seeking help or looking for ways to explore your own creativity, feel free to reach out to @stephaniezellerdds on her Instagram account or check out her website. Until then, #keeplearning.

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