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The power of intuition

There are many people in this world that believe to have a perfect vision of their future. In fact, most of us live in the illusion that we have planned everything on the way. We choose to believe in the power of knowledge and to walk only on known paths in order to succeed. But what happens if suddenly those perfect plans take a different turn? In our strive to always make the perfect decisions and to take the right actions, we become prisoners of our own thoughts. We do not want to admit the power of intuition. We believe only in our conscious mind but we do not realise the power of our unconsciousness. Intuition cannot be described or explained logically, it is the ability to know or feel things without any conscious reasoning. More precisely, our actions or decisions are based on experiences that we have already had in the past. Being part of the modern world, we think that the more we learn and work, the more we will succeed. But it is not the more information that we perceive that make us aware of the world around us, it is the better understanding we have that lead us to take the right decisions. Intuition has a big role in everyone’s life (Psychology Today, n.d.). In the creative world, it is used as a powerful tool in a lot of different situations by famous artists. By listening to our intuition we can benefit from it and progress in our development as designers in the present and future. Using our inner voice as guidance for reaching a final conclusion can be extremely useful when it comes to design. For instance, when we are facing certain problems or we are experiencing some kind of difficulties, letting our creative side to flow, simply by trusting our intuition, give us the ability to bring all ideas and previous experiences together, thus, we will end up having a concept (Innsaei, 2016). The function of our brain and the process of creativity are explained in details in an online article from 2015. All of our thoughts and ideas tend to have the role of small dots that are in constant connection to help us to develop our cognitive flexibility (Bergland, 2015). This study will examine in details the mystery around intuition and its power to formulate split-second decisions through our unconscious mind. It will research in depth how actually our thirst for more knowledge interferes with the flow of performance and cause the process of analysis paralysis, therefore we lose our ability to find solutions for our problems. In addition, a further investigation will be accomplished in order to explain the role of our brain and the importance of developing the potential to use intuition as a creative tool. The current study will also emphasize the benefits of intuition and its application in real life. In accordance, the definition Combinatory Creativity will be defined and examples will be given including famous individuals that use it. Chapter 1. “Think before you act.” 1.1. Developing intellectuality The evolution of the world, for the past years, has reached high peaks of changes. As living creatures, we are in constant transition by witnessing and experiencing every little alteration. These changes may concern everything from the development of technologies to our emotional state. Living in a fast-paced environment which influences our existence, human behavior undergoes tremendous changes. Often, it happens that we lose the connection between our inner world and the outside world. Precisely, we turn into outsiders in our own lives. Surrounded by distractions and stuck in the same old ways of doing things, we keep repeating history and we lose awareness of the world around us (Innsaei, 2016). The levels of anxiety and worry increase faster than usual when we are being concerned about the future or dwelling in the past. Our mindfulness is under question when we are focused on what happened before and what is about to happen later. There are many reasons behind the way we act or react in particular situations. It is very important to be aware of the main source that controls all of our responses and how it functions. Our brain is our greatest supplier of thoughts, knowledge, understanding, and perceiving. Everything that we do, say or think, is based on signals that the brain sends to our body (Bergland, 2015). The development of our intellectuality is a crucial part of our lives, especially for children. At a young age, the way of how we are told or taught to perceive information and understand it set a new base of experience that is being stored in our brain capacity and used for future interactions. 1.2. Society’s tendencies Frequently, the main fault of how adults educate children is by setting particular limits to their thinking and actions. For example, society’s tendencies such as ‘think before you act’ or ‘think things through’, are used under a different form but the same definition in kindergartens, schools, and universities (Morenas, n.d.). To be told what is wrong or what is right, without having the chance to make a decision by ourselves, influence our future behavior or approach in certain ways. Moreover, the constant demand of having a reason behind every decision or action that we take leads to the appearance of doubt in our possibilities and everything else that surrounds us (Morenas, n.d.). For instance, when we are facing a challenging situation and we need to come up with a solution, our brain may fail to respond as a result of our past experiences. The key to good decision making is not knowledge. It is understanding. We are swimming in the former. We are desperately lacking in the latter (Gladwell, n.d.). We believe that if we do not have any logical explanation behind our thoughts or our thinking is not based on a strategy to reach a successful conclusion, a failure may be faced. Thus, we suffer from overthinking most often in stressful and challenging situations. Pressured by our own thoughts, which are only imaginative assumptions, we eventually reach a point of despair. We succumb to fear and it becomes extremely difficult to get out of the comfort zone and to explore unknown paths of thoughts or actions (Dingley, 2017). To only trust our conscious mind means not to be cognitively flexible and not to be aware of the power of our unconsciousness. 1.3. Analysis Paralysis The state of over-thinking or over-analysing a decision exists under the definition ‘Analysis Paralysis’. Analysis paralysis describes a moment where we become paralyzed during the process of over-thinking and we do not take action, therefore, a solution is not attained (Chen, 2018). Usually, it arises when: • We feel overpowered by the available choices we have. • We see a particular situation as too complicated. • We feel the urge to make the ‘right’ or the ‘perfect’ decision. • We fear to make decisions that may lead to failure, hence we never make a decision. (Chua, n.d.) In 2013, a research from UCSB prove that whenever there is an overactivity in the prefrontal cortex(the prefrontal cortex is a region of our brain; it is said to be linked with our emotions, behavior and will to live), it affects the fluid performance of our memory process (Bergland, 2015). Example for people who experience analysis paralysis are athletes. In sports, the state of being paralyzed means ‘failure to react in response to over-thought’ (Tauer, 2011). When athletes are practicing a particular sport, they often fall into the trap of ‘trying too hard intellectually’ in order to consider their next move by going through all possible opportunities or by trying to foresee their opponent’s moves. The state of being paralyzed slow the progress of their actions and it makes them choke (Bergland, 2015). Another case where analysis paralysis can be identified is among artists. Like people who need to have a wide imagination of ideas and the ability to come up with solutions for creative problems fast, they may also fall into the trap of over-thinking. The lack of focus caused by side distractions or the ambitions to achieve too much at once can sabotage their creative process and results (Bergland, 2015). Famous artists like Pablo Picasso and Leonardo da Vinci didn’t have a constant stream of ideas that would turn into excellent works, for instance. By following their intuition and relying on the unconscious mind they were focusing their inner energy on learning from failures and mistakes. America’s great inventor Thomas Edison described the unsuccessful moments of his life not as failures but as a chance to realise why his previous approaches didn’t work. ‘….genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration’ (Bergland, 2015). In order to be aware of the world around us, we need to understand that we cannot plan our future ahead. Life is what it is happening at the moment, in the present. We need to let ourselves to explore and take different journeys and not to be afraid to fail on the way. In the end, we may fail or we may succeed, but in both cases, it would mean that we took a different pattern so we gained a new experience. Being spontaneous and trusting our intuition is the only way we can achieve mindfulness between our inner world and the outside world. Our unconsciousness usually give us better control of the situation/problem we are facing and better chance to find a solution faster and successfully. Chapter 2. Intuition 2.1. What is intuition? ‘Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans’ (Rose, 2012). The power of intuition has been questioned by a lot of people who do not believe in the process of finding solutions based on the unconscious mind. But the realisation how every small decision or move that is being made as a result of a signal that our unconscious mind sends to all parts of the body. But what exactly is intuition? Precisely, intuition is the capability to obtain knowledge without any conscious reasoning, evidence or proof. It means to have our brain on autopilot without understanding how we reach conclusions or how we acquire more knowledge (Psychology Today, n.d.). In a particular situation or moment, our brain processes all the stored information and makes us perform an action without our conscious awareness. The decision that we make or the action that we perform is based on ‘thousands of small, often imperceptible experiences’ we have ever had and everything that we have ever learned (Popova, 2011). As mentioned above, there is no logical description or explanation behind intuition. It is an inner feeling, guidance, or said in similar words, an internal compass. It is the ability to sense things before they even happen (Chen, 2018). In addition, the term intuition originates from the Latin verb intueri interpreted as “consider” or from the English word intuit, ‘to contemplate’. Nowadays, existing in the constantly changing and challenging world, we think that the more we learn and work, the more success we will earn. We prefer to overwhelm ourselves with information instead of trying to understand and process what we already know. Even if some of us do not want to admit that their intuition leads to making the best decisions, there are some clear examples of the role it plays in our daily life. Intuition is when: • We can see through people. Sometimes an inner sense would tell us if we can trust the person in front of us or there is something wrong. • We would think of someone and in the next moment the phone rings. The person that is calling is the same person we were thinking of before. • We put our safety first. If we are being in a situation where our safety is questioned and an inner voice is telling us something does not feel right, we listen to it and do not proceed further (Bennett, 2018). 2.2. What are we capable to do by using our intuition? Trusting our brain and body in order to filter and form our intuition into something compassionate and useful, can give us better control of our thoughts. A movie from 2016 called ‘Innsaei’ takes a closer look at intuition and its powerful role within the human intellectuality. In the movie, several experts from all around the world explain and discuss the opportunities that we get when trusting our intuition and the capability to make final decisions. Professor Bill George from Harvard Business School examined the topic of intuition by emphasizing on the importance of the connection between our brain and body. He talks about how in the last 25 years rational thinking has taken over the opportunity to develop deeper intuitive skills (Innsaei, 2016). Although the continually emerging problems of the innovative world take over most of our time, we do realise that to solve these problems we need to take a new approach and ‘think out of the box’. Letting ourselves to be more impulsive and spontaneous enhance the chances to make faster progress on our goals (Morenas, n.d.). In his book ‘Blink’, Malcolm Gladwell argues how the capability to make split-second decisions induces better accuracy and justification.

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