Why You Should Listen to Your Inner Voice

We all have an inner voice that speaks to us every day. For many of us, hearing this voice speak to us, read to us, or organize our thoughts for us is such a regular occurrence, we hardly even think of it. Still, many experts believe that there is value in listening to our inner voice. After all, not only is it the running commentary of thoughts and experiences, it is the voice of our intuition, emotions, and self-image.

In the following article, we’ll take a more in-depth look at your inner voice, what it is, and what scientific evidence exists to support its value. We’ll also provide you with a list of reasons why you listen to your inner voice. Ultimately, the goal of this article is to help you become better in touch with yourself in the hopes you will be able to manifest positive results in your daily life.

What is Your Inner Voice?

Your inner voice, sometimes called an internal monologue, inner speech, or inner discourse, is the voice that provides us with a verbal representation of our thoughts as we are conscious. As we mentioned earlier, it is such a constant thing. Still, very few of us even pay any attention to it. Even so, it is the voice that allows us to read, solve problems, register our emotions, and speak to ourselves.

Our inner voice has many different effects on our everyday lives and is practically synonymous with our day to day mental function. For mental health professionals, understanding the inner voice and its effects (both negative and positive) on the mentally ill is paramount to dealing with depression, schizophrenia, and anxiety.

For others, the inner voice is something that can be harnessed to significant effect, particularly tasks that involve self-regulation, critical thinking, and emotional management. Others view the inner voice as a highly-intuitive thing on its own, possessing an almost supernatural ability to warn us of impending disaster or guide us toward the right choice in times of need.

While there exists little scientific evidence to corroborate the latter belief, there are endless anecdotal accounts of people getting a “gut feeling” or a “weird sensation” that resulted in them avoiding inevitable disasters. Is our inner voice just our subconscious telling us the logical path, or is there more to it? We may never know, but there’s no denying that our inner voice has a significant role to play in our lives.

The Science Behind Intuition

“Hunches,” “gut feelings,” and other forms of intuition have been studied by experts for decades. No matter how many people try to prove or disprove the true nature of our inner voice, the results almost always come out ambiguous. Obviously, there is a purpose to our inner voice behind providing a monologue of our daily thoughts, but what it is seems to escape us.

What science can tell us about intuition is that we can harness it to make faster, more accurate, and more confident decisions. Indeed, studies have demonstrated that there are some benefits to making decisions without using analytical reasoning. Still, how and why this is remains something of a mystery.

Many people around the globe praise intuition and the inner voice as being a gateway to better choices and avoiding danger. Whether the ability of some people to harness their intuition is mere coincidence, science, or something more, there remains little doubt that there is value in our inner voice.

Ways to Get in Touch with Your Inner Voice

For many, the most significant barrier to listening to their inner voice is learning to hear it. In our daily lives, we experience so much noise that very few of us remember how to pay attention to what’s going on inside of us. Luckily, there are some simple techniques that you can use to help you reach a more open, reflective state. Here are just a few:

Seek Out Quiet

When you are still, reflective, and contemplative, you are in a much better position to hear what your inner voice is telling you. For many people, the easiest way to reach this state of mind is to meditate in a quiet place. Others, however, prefer to walk in nature or seek out natural beauty. It may take a while to figure out what works for you, but the results are often immediate.

Increase Your Inner Awareness

Our modern world has taught us that more distractions are the key to being happy. Even if this is true for some, it isn’t very effective for finding and listening to our inner voice. Instead of driving, biking, or working out with music, try doing it silently instead (or with meditative audio). You’ll be surprised how quickly your mind turns inward and allows you to hear what your body is telling you.

Save Problems For Bedtime

Though it may seem like a recipe for a bad night’s sleep, there are a lot of benefits to this trick. Assume you have a problem that’s been bugging you for a while now. Rather than let it occupy your mind all day (interfering with work, etc.), tell yourself to put it off for bedtime. The key is to not necessarily reflect on the problem before falling asleep, just to think about it.

In the morning, many people find that new ideas and solutions are suddenly flooding their minds. This technique is a testament to the power of the subconscious. You’re essentially “tricking” your brain into doing the work while you get some much-needed rest. When you wake, your inner voice will begin reporting the results!

Reasons You Should Listen to Your Inner Voice

Though we can’t truly define what our inner voice is, we can’t argue against paying closer attention to what it has to say. From decision making to regulating emotions to tapping into your subconscious more efficiently, there are endless reasons why you should listen to your inner voice. Below, we’ve listed some of the best.

You Can Better Pay Attention to Your Emotions

Though people commonly refer to it as a “voice,” our intuition can also manifest itself in feelings. They might be genuinely positive, profoundly negative, or a more ambiguous, “uneasy” feeling that we can’t honestly explain. Either way, whenever we have feelings like this, the proper way to deal with them is to quickly find a way to reflect deeply on what they can mean.

Not only will doing this help you parse out what your intuition is telling you, but it will also help you become more in touch with your feelings in general. Unfortunately, many of us have gotten used to virtually ignoring any information that appears to come from within, with emotions being a virtual “boogeyman” for all sorts of people who don’t know how to trust themselves.

By harnessing feelings that seem to come from nowhere and truly reflecting on what they might be trying to tell you, you can become infinitely more emotionally intelligent. All it takes is a little practice and some light meditation.

Your Inner Voice Can Eliminate Bad Feelings

Everyone feels on edge at times, especially in our modern, highly-stressful world. Unfortunately, when presented with challenges, all too many of us allow ourselves to become frustrated, anxious, or angry. These feelings course through our entire body, multiplying negative effects and affecting everything from our minds and hearts to our stomachs and skin.

When you learn how to tap into your inner voice and listen to what it has to say, you begin to recognize just how strong and resilient you are. After enough time spent re-learning how to trust what your inner voice has to say, you’ll find confidence like you’ve never known before. When you’re confident and aware of your inner strength, feelings of frustration, angst, and anxiety suddenly start to dissolve.

You Can Rediscover Your True Purpose

Many people feel that their life lacks purpose, or that they have any power to affect the world around them. Others believe that their lives have a designated purpose, but they have no idea what it is and are clueless on how to find it. For many people, seeing their true purpose (or at least identifying the paths that will lead you to it) becomes much clearer after they learn to tap into their inner voice.

When you are in a more reflective state or when you have mastered the techniques that let you hear what your inner voice is telling you, you naturally begin to think about the meaning of your life. Frequently, your inner voice will provide feedback on the choices you’ve made and the choices you need to make for the future.

Many people describe this feeling as viewing two “paths.” These aren’t actual paths, of course, but clear, distinct choices between one thing and another. Where one may seem scary and result in an unknown destination, another will seem safe, but familiar. The more we let our inner voice guide us on the right path, the closer we’ll be to our real purpose.

You Can Develop a Relationship with Your Voice

As you read many of these points, it might be tempting to think of your inner voice as something that appears and disappears randomly, offering advice and then leaving until it is needed again. This actually couldn’t be further from the truth. Instead, think of your inner voice as a friend with which you can develop a beneficial, lasting relationship.

Many people learn to recognize the patterns of their inner voice, which in turn allows them to strengthen the “muscles” associated with their intuition. Over time, these people develop the ability to call on their inner voice at will, without meditation or deep reflection of any kind. Once you have a relationship with your inner voice, there’s almost no limit to what the two of you can accomplish.

You Can Discover Your Moral Compass

Morality exists inside of us, regardless of how society or faith defines it. Unfortunately, not everyone’s moral compass is aligned the same way. Sure, those of us who aren’t psychopathic or sociopathic know that killing is wrong. But what about deer hunting? Not everyone who goes hunting is a psychopath, so how do they justify killing in that regard? For that matter, what about eating meat?

The point we’re making here is: everyone has a personal moral compass that is the product of decades of internalized experiences and opinions. Some of these come from outside sources (parents, priests, friends), but the vast majority of them are direct reflections of what we have been through in our lives.

When you learn to tap into your inner voice, your moral compass will become all the clearer to you. Sure, you can tell yourself what you value and what moral standards you have, but your true moral compass will always be defined by what your inner voice tells you. Learn to listen to it. Don’t be afraid of it. Your voice is there to help you make the right choice.

Your Inner Voice Is a Huge Time Saver

As humans, we agonize over the slightest decisions. From deciding what to eat in the morning to what career path to take, every decision – large or small – tends to occupy a large amount of space in our minds. We complicate this fact with our tendency to second guess ourselves and to procrastinate when presented with large decisions.

Did you know that there is more time lost in indecision than in making the wrong decision? Indeed, in most cases, it’s faster to go back to the start and take another path than it is to stand at the crossroads puzzling out which one to take. Our inner voice may not always know the right path per se, but it is always pushing us to make a decision sooner rather than later.

Keep in mind that your inner voice is not suggesting that you be impulsive, though even that would save more time than an endless weighing of consequences. Instead, your voice is encouraging you to be bold and make your choice with confidence. Right or wrong, it’s better to find out with plenty of time to correct your mistakes.

Your Inner Voice Is a Leader

The vast majority of us are followers. We seek out advice from others on how to live our lives and what “best practices” will guide us to the happiest ending. Though there are plenty of insightful people out there that can offer great advice, they don’t know your inner motivations and secret wants and needs. Indeed, many of us don’t even know our motivations.

Your inner voice does. This fact is one of the clearest examples as to why we need to develop our ability to listen to our inner voices. Our inner voice has access to our subconscious and unconscious and therefore has tremendous insight into what we should be doing with our lives. Your inner voice is a leader on the expedition of life. You have to decide whether to listen to it or not.

Your Inner Voice is Vital to Personal Growth

People who talk to themselves have incredibly high levels of self-awareness and are much better at evaluating themselves honestly than those who do not. You see such behavior all the time in athletes, writers, and creatives, many of whom talk outwardly with themselves to illicit a response from their subconscious and perform better at a task.

Whether you’re saying the words out loud or inside your head, you’re still trying to gain insight from your intuition. This dialogue is very powerful and offers a lot of perspective on what you’re doing and how you’re doing it. This process can be crucial to developing a “self-narrative,” which is, in turn, vital to personal growth.

The last thing you want to be is the type of person who doesn’t recognize that their subconscious and unconscious can impact their life and their decision making. Learn to communicate with your inner voice more effectively, and you’ll discover what they have to offer quite quickly.

Your Inner Voice Can Provide Protection

This point goes back to those “gut feelings” that we discussed at the beginning of the article. In many ways, our intuition can pick up on subtle cues that might indicate a potentially uncomfortable or even dangerous situation. Unfortunately, so many of us have learned to ignore those feelings of unease or discomfort, that we don’t benefit from our voice’s insight.

Many experts liken the warnings our intuition gives us to the apparent “sixth sense” that you see very often in the animal kingdom. Examples include animals leaving an area before a volcano erupts, or your dog hiding under the bed long before a storm hits. It’s not crazy if you think about it. Animals have fewer distractions in their lives, so wouldn’t they be naturally more “tuned in” to their intuition?

Now, we’re not saying that your inner voice will keep you from getting on a crashing airplane or getting into a car that’s bound to wreck (though there are instances of these things happening). Still, there are clear protective benefits to listening to your inner voice, even when things seem like they’re safe.

Your Inner Voice is More than Just You

When we said that your inner voice knows more about you than you do yourself, we didn’t just mean the good stuff. Many experts believe that your inner voice stems from outside factors as well, including speech that you absorbed during childhood and opinions that you have heard your entire life. For good or ill, your inner voice is a reflection of everything.

This fact represents one of the most important reasons why you should listen to your inner voice: you need to learn to sift through the noise. Whenever you attempt to make contact with your intuition, you will encounter the voices of parents who criticized you, friends who mistreated you, and countless other negative influences from your past.

With practice, however, you can learn to filter out all of this negative energy and find your voice – the one that wants you to succeed and be happy. In the end, it may be quite a challenge to find your intuition, but when you do, the reward will be great.

You Can Better Navigate the Dating World

For all the existential and philosophical reasons to listen to your inner voice, this one might seem a bit trite. Still, dating is a significant aspect of our life, having a direct correlation with our levels of stress, happiness, and satisfaction. It should be noted, of course, that your intuition is not a dating app to help you find the right guy or girl, but a way to filter through the noise and identify what you want in a partner.

The world tells us to want a lot of different things in a romantic counterpart. From how attractive they are to how they dress to what they do for a living, there seems to be endless input from the outside telling us who is right for us. Again, our inner voice is in touch with our subconscious and unconscious. This fact makes it quite adept at warning us when we’re about to commit to someone who is wrong for us.

When you have a dialogue with your inner voice, you can approach the dating world with a lot more confidence because you’ll have a better idea of what constitutes the right partner. Think of all the time you’ve wasted being with or pursuing someone wrong for you. Now think about never doing that again because you’re more in tune with what your perfect partner should be.

You Can Master Intuitive Decision Making

We all make decisions. Thousands of them, in fact, in a single day. While it may surprise you, the vast majority of the decisions you make already come directly from your inner voice. That is to say: you don’t think about many of the little choices you make throughout the day – you simply do them. Think back about your morning routine, and you can probably identify dozens of such decisions.

Learning to master intuitive decision making is taking something you already know how to do and applying it to more substantial decisions. Now, we’re not saying you should make life-changing choices with no input or reasoning, but we are saying that you can benefit a lot from looking inward instead of outward when the time comes to make such choices.

The process goes like this:

Stop – The first thing you want to do if you sense discomfort or a “nagging feeling” when approaching a decision is to pause immediately. You feel this way for a reason, and you need to take a few minutes to figure out what that reason may be. As you won’t need to make most decisions immediately, you almost always have time to do this.

Listen – Examine your mental reservations about the decisions you are about to make. Where do you think they’re coming from, and why? Also, analyze your body. What symptoms are you feeling? Are they related to the decision you’re considering, or are there other reasons you might be uneasy?

Hear – Unlike listening, “hearing” is when we make contact with our inner voice and focus on what it is telling us. Very often, this will come to you in the form of a quick sentence or a few words that you have to parse out. Still, the warning – if there is one – should be clear.

You Can Clean Up Your Real-Life Friend’s List

The world teaches us that having friends is what enriches and adds value to our lives. In many ways, this statement is very true. However, many of us have taken this to mean that we should surround ourselves with as many friends as possible.  Unfortunately, many of our “friends” do very little to enrich our lives – some may even add stress, discomfort, and even threaten our safety.

When you learn to listen to your inner voice, your ability to identify good and bad qualities in your relationships becomes enhanced. Your body and mind will offer you signals to get away from a person if they aren’t beneficial to you. Become more in touch with your intuition, and you can both hear these signals and gain the confidence to abandon a bad friendship before it gets worse.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are a lot of reasons why you should listen to your inner voice. Not only does our inner voice provide constant insight into what we’re doing and how we’re doing it, but it pushes us to make decisions, to be bold, and to be brave. Our inner voice has a lot to tell us about the problems we face every day. Learn to heed its advice, and you might see significant changes in your life.

No matter what you want out of your relationship with your inner voice, you’ll be sure to become more in-tune with your wants, your needs, and your desires.

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