Do this one thing and your life will change, guaranteed. It’s so simple and smacks us in the face, if we would just listen. For those that have or have had young children, remember when your child would say ‘mom, mom, mommmmmm, mom are you listening to me?” Of course, we weren’t. It was usually on the 6th or 7th mom, we’d stop, look our child in the eye and truly listen. Your inner voice does the same thing. It’s like it say, “Denise, Denise, Denisssssssssssssse, are you listening to me?” For so many of us the answer to this question is no. Some of you will go a lifetime without listening to that inner voice.
I listen to my inner voice. Your inner voice is not your ego. Your inner voice is your soul. It’s the part of you that was you before you were you and it joined you when you were conceived. Learning how to listen to that voice or your soul can absolutely change your life.
Sometimes the voice whispers to us and sometimes it shouts. It’s the voice that says stop doing this now, make this phone call today, check your child’s text messages (when you normally don’t), quit this job before it kills you, make a left here, don’t hang out with this person, etc. For example, when I met my husband in our sophomore year in college, as soon as I saw him, I knew. My inner voice told me. I knew that this man was someone that was meant for me. I was in a long term relationship, but I knew that I’d have to get out of it. I listened. Nearly 30 years later, I’m glad I did. Sometimes the voice isn’t that loud or obvious. Sometimes the voice is just a whisper so I want to give you a few pointers so that you learn to listen and respond to your inner voice.
First, you must believe that you actually have an inner voice. I also refer to your inner voice as your soul. The word soul may be too deep for you. If that turns you down a religious road that you don’t wish to drive on, that’s ok. Use ‘inner voice’ if it’s a bit safer. I like to think of your inner voice as a radio channel to God, or GOD101.1. The channel is always there mind you, but you may have the volume turned down or there’s too much static on the line. Think of your ego as static. As long as there’s static, you won’t be able to hear your inner voice. Your ego is the part of you that considers yourself separate from everyone else and it can create a lot of commotion on your GOD101.1 line. Because the ego separates you from others, it allows judgement and fear to be its primary means of communication. Your ego declares you to be fat compared the lady working out next to you, poor compared to your neighbors, unfulfilled compared to the career mother, bored compared to that person on facebook™, scared out of your mind when flicking on the news, you know all that good stuff that comes out of the ego.
Your inner voice doesn’t come with all this static and commotion. Think of your inner voice as the observer of the ego. The observer says, be quiet ego and let me speak. Now it’s our job to listen.
The second point is that it might not be static on the line but rather you have turned down the volume to GOD101.1. The only way to turn up the volume of your soul is to turn down the volume of everything else. Everything else includes your ego, Facebook™, Twitter™, Snapchat™, the news, your friends, your enemies, your mother, your mother-n-law, and so on and so on. In order to hear that ‘still small voice’ you must turn down the volume of everything else.
And the best time to tune in is first thing in the morning. Many of the other things clamoring for your attention, such as kids, chores, social media, work and family obligations are still sleeping or silent. While I’m not saying early morning is the only time, I’d definitely say it’s the best time. I wake up naturally between 4:45 am and 5 am. It still amazes me after all these years. As long as I’m asleep by 10 pm, my natural waking time is nice and early. I literally have an internal alarm. In fact I haven’t used an alarm clock for years. And as you can imagine, my phone is not on my night stand, but rather waits for me comfortably in the kitchen.
The third point is, not only should you tune in and turn up the volume to your inner voice, you should also write it down. I began journaling over ten years ago. My journal is not a diary where I record my daily events like what I had for breakfast or who I called that day. My journal is where I record things I want to remember. Perhaps I’ll write down highlights from an inspiring book that I just completed, or record a quote that I saw and think is worth knowing. Perhaps something great happened in my life and I want to re-mind myself of it later. I may tape in a card given to me by my son or husband or a thank you note from a patient. If I attend an inspiring lecture or seminar, I take my journal with me for note-taking. If possible with a well-known speaker, and I’m able, I get the speaker to sign that page of my journal. I’ve gotten several autographs this way, my favorite being the late, great Wayne Dyer.
My journal is also where I record my inner voice. I find pretty 8½x11 inch hardback, spiral bound journals. I got thru one to two journals per year. A yellow legal pad or black and white composition notebook will also do. If my house were burning down, after saving myself, my family, and my pets, I’d save my journals. They are that valuable to me.
My journal is a place I record my soul’s voice. It usually begins with, “Dear Denise.” Then, I just start writing. I’ll write a Dear Denise letter every few weeks when there’s a download of information worth recording. I picture God speaking to me and I write a letter from ‘Him’ to me. I also will write a letter to God, when I need to record my hopes, desires, aspirations and prayer requests and I want to make sure God knows. I realize God knows all, but somehow, the written word just solidifies it.
The beauty of accumulating these journals is by re-reading them you’ll see patterns or repetitive thoughts. For example, that’s when I knew I had to stop drinking. If was on the 5th page of my first journal back in 2006 when I wrote, “drink less.” And over ten years of keeping journals, as I would re-read them I saw the pattern. Drink less. Only drink on the weekends. Go on an alcohol fast. So I just spontaneously decided one day to save the ink for something greater so that I never had to write again, ‘Dear Denise, don’t drink so much”. And I stopped drinking, just…………..like…………that.
The fourth point of listening to your soul is to the follow thru. Ahhhhh, that’s the hard part. What’s great about recording the voice is that you got a written receipt! When you write something down for the 27th time, perhaps it’s then you should listen.
Listen to that still small voice. Wake up early. Write it down. See the patterns. Follow thru. Your life will change for the better. Double dare you.
P.S. I considered sharing with you a few of my “Dear Denise” letters. But after trying to find some and re-reading them, I realized they weren’t meant to be shared. They were love letter just between me and God. My grandfather or Grandpere as we called him use to say, “some things are just too personal.” And I agree!