I spent this weekend with several long-time friends discussing how the world is changing and how it impacts us all. We all agreed that something has shifted and the way we have led in the past may not be as productive as it once was. So which new skill do leaders need to master if they hope to be better serving leaders moving forward? The skill I’m talking about here is intuition.
We couldn’t think of one great leader who hasn’t developed their intuition. Since there is so much information about the other key skills of serving leadership, I thought I’d share my thoughts on how to develop your intuition. This is a skill that can take years to develop or can happen in an instant as we cultivate the awareness of how it impacts our lives and the lives of the people around us.
The first step in developing intuition is you must be willing to understand that you may never have all the information you need to make decisions. The more complicated the situation, the more likely it is that you will have larger gaps in what you need to know to take action on a decision. Intuitive people learn to work comfortably in ambiguous situations and tend to thrive in situations that would drive many of us mad. I can hear you thinking, “Tripp, I should be more intuitive in my life but I won’t ever have all the information I need. This is making me very uncomfortable.”
I know it is uncomfortable, but that leads to the second step of developing your intuition. To become more intuitive you invest some of your time learning about many things. I believe we have left the era of highly specialized skills and have entered a time where we can become co-creators of our lives. Most intuitive people I know are voracious learners. They are always looking at everything and trying to connect the different aspects of their lives. They are always curious and constantly looking for new and better ways of doing things. For them, it’s not enough to observe things; they always are looking for unusual connections between different ideas and concepts.
The third step is you must be willing to admit you don’t know everything. You would be surprised how difficult this can be for people who earn their living with their minds. Engineers, doctors, clergy and IT professionals typically have good answers for everything. The key word here is good answers, to create breakthrough solutions they must let go of how they currently see the world and replace it with an increasing level of curiosity about the solutions they create. They must be willing to explore their own limits to have intuition come to their aid.
Finally, Intuition requires a leap of faith. For many practical people, it is extremely hard to trust themselves and others. They tell you they are in the business of facts and not fictions. Of course, many breakthrough ideas have come after the facts have run out. We must learn to trust ourselves and our knowing to fully take advantage of intuition. I bet some of you are reading this and are saying, “Tripp, I feel like you’ve left me out on a ledge.” I’ve done this on purpose. I want to share how you can use a number of tools to help you develop your intuition more fully. Once you start to become more intuitive, it changes how you live your life forever. See you Thursday, when I give you several great ideas to help you become more intuitive.