I know gut feeling is highly debatable: No one has more impeccable intuition that Captain Picard of Star Trek: The Next Generation, and he’s a fictional character. Some argue that gut feeling is just our five sense working with our brain to come to a conclusion. Others feel it’s a sixth sense. I’ve also seen people claim that something is intuition when it’s really just their ego masquerading as this undefinable gift or skill.
Whatever it is, though, I still go against it even though it’s proven itself right on numerous occasions. The other week, an acquaintance presented me with a wonderful volunteer opportunity where I would have gotten to meet lots of incredible musicians. My gut feeling was telling me to turn it down, but I couldn’t figure out why: my calendar was clear, and although I had several assignments on the go, I could certainly squeeze in such an opportunity.
Something was urging me to turn it down, but I couldn’t figure out why, so I said yes.
We often think gut feelings are there to protect us, but in this case (as in others, too) it was there to protect this person. You see, I’ve been fighting this cold for over a month. And as embarrassing as that is (it’s been a few years since I’ve had a cold that lasted longer than two days), I assumed it would be gone by that night.
You know where this is going.
Not only had the cold not left by then (a good week after the initial phone call), it had gotten worse. There was no way I was going to infect over 100 singers with some kind of bronchial infection. That morning, I had to call her up – sinuses congested and my trying to suppress the horrible-sounding cough – after I’d arrived at work and cancel. (I also left work a couple of hours later to go home and rest.)
Had I listened to my gut feeling, my acquaintance would’ve had time to find someone else to help her out that night. The night went ahead, and from what I can tell, all ended well. But sometimes that gut feeling – whether it’s your mind just knowing something or it truly is some kind of sixth sense – needs to be listened to.
Have a good Canada Day long weekend!