Scientists discover trusting our emotions helps us make accurate predictions
I believe that we are all born with psychic intuition; but it seems that many of us have to be convinced that we can be just as powerfully guided by our psychic selves as our rational minds.
So I’m always delighted to report research that shows that our own psychic hunches and feelings are a sound source of guidance.
Research soon to be published in the Journal of Consumer Research and reported on Sciencedaily.com shows that trusting our feelings can really help us make accurate predictions.
Researchers came to that conclusion after eight studies in which people were asked to make predictions on various things, such as how well a certain film might do and even the weather. Results across all eight studies showed that those with a higher trust in their feelings were more likely to make accurate predictions. Researchers called this the ‘emotional oracle effect’. Conversely, the less people trusted their feelings, the less likely they were to make accurate predictions.
Research like this is important. The rise of what some call ‘the cult of rationality’ means that we are often taught to listen to reason; and ignore our intuition or emotions. It is a huge generalisation, but I’ll stick my neck out and say that very few of us were taught that our feelings gave us valuable information; or were coached in how to understand and interpret them.
A few years back, there was a lot of talk about our Emotional IQ – our ability to interpret and handle our feelings – as being as influential on how successful we could be as our intelligence. But if we don’t make friends with our feelings, we can end up as strangers to ourselves, visibly seething but snapping we’re fine when anyone asks or dampening down bursts of joy because we feel guilty or stupid for being happy.
So how do you make friends with your feelings?
Stay with them
Allow yourself to sit quietly and notice what you experience in your mind and body with any particular feeling. Where does anger grab you? Where do you feel joy? What inner dialogue runs through your mind when you are jealous?
Watch out for that little inner voice that tells you it’s stupid, wrong, irrational, crazy or anything like that to feel sad, upset, happy or passionate. You don’t need to act on your feelings. But see what starts to evolve; if you just allow them to be rather than leaping to judge them.
Being comfortable with your feelings will help you make links between what happens and the emotions that come up as a result. Over time, you can build a vocabulary. In particular, pay attention to those times when you make predictions about what is going to happen. It could be as simple as making a note of whether it’s going to be a sunny weekend. Over time, you may begin to notice that you too can make accurate predictions about the future.
Have you noticed a link between trusting how you feel and whether or not you can accurately predict what’s going to happen? Or Have you had times when you just ‘knew’ what was going to unfold; and you had the confidence to stick by that thought? Have we gone too far in pushing rationality over our feelings? Post your thoughts – and feelings – below!
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