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How to Identify Your “Inner Voice” - Kelly N Patterson

Posted 5/31/2011 12:00:00 AM By Kelly Patterson
Kelly Patterson
How to Identify Your “Inner Voice” By Kelly N Patterson

Everyone and their cousin knows we are supposed to “listen” and “trust” our “inner voice”; however, with so many thoughts competing in our heads, on any given second-- “I have to call my grandmother“, “I need to take the dog out”, “Where is my lighter?” etc. , people often ask me how to clearly identify which “voice” is truly our “inner voice”--well, this is what I tell people, in plain simple English-- not “hippie-speak” or therapist jargon:

Your inner voice sounds like a 7 year old.  Your inner voice only speaks in present tense.  For example:  “I am hungry.”  “I’m tired.”  “I don’t feel like going out tonight.”  “Something smells funny in here.”  “I want sushi.  I need sushi, like now!”  “He is really cute!” “Those cannot be real.” etc. 

When you start hearing conditional verbs, like ”should”, “could”, “would“, “have to”, “must”, etc. such as “I really should call my mother.”  “I have to go to the gym today.”  “If I had the time, I would go to yoga more often.”--this is not you!  This is conditioning!

These thoughts, which cleverly sound like your own, could be your mother’s voice, because she told you 4,786 times, as you were growing up, that “nice girls don’t have sex before the third date”, or it could be your religious upbringing, which pounded into your head what is “right” or “wrong.”  Or, it could be your third grade teacher, your doctor, your best friend, Smokey the Bear, Mickey Mouse, your therapist, your ethnic/cultural background, your national background, or just society, in general. 

Think of the kabillion commercials you have seen on television, heard on the radio, seen on billboards, advertising EVERYWHERE (the good, the bad, and the ugly) telling you that glowing white, straight teeth are the key to sexual attraction, or that hairy legs and armpits, on women, are not “sexy”--even though hair in these areas was apparently a biological/evolutionary asset of some kind. 

Think about all the overt and subliminal “messages”: images (uber-thin women on slick magazine covers), slogans “Got Milk?” or “Marijuana is the gateway drug“, signs (“Click it, or ticket!”  “Stop!”) you absorb unconsciously, every day, almost every moment of your day…just on your way to work!  You absorb radio commercials selling you happiness, security, safety, wealth, or telling you what you NEED. 

Even if you are listening to your iPod on your morning commute, the songs you are listening to and whatever their message may be, is being tattooed into your brain. And of course, the television, internet, all media is sending out both overt and covert messages that are subconsciously being absorbed into your head, almost every second of your day. 

Marketing is the hard science of getting people to do something--whether it is to buy a product, recycle, stop smoking, or buckle your seatbelt.  With this constant assault of ideas and messages being downloaded in our brains constantly, it is no wonder people have a hard time, especially nowadays, being able to clearly identify his/her “inner voice”!

So again, your inner voice sounds like you, when you were 7 years old, and only speaks in present tense.  So next time you have to make a decision, try to hear the “Well, I really need a nap” over the “I should do some work in my garden”, because it is true, your inner voice is your internal GPS in life and is there to guide you.  That said, my inner voice is telling me this article is done.











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