How often do you stick to the playbook vs. going with your intuition?

Photo courtesy of Avinash Kunnath

Photo courtesy of Avinash Kunnath

Recently, I had a situation materialize that inspired me to pen this essay.

I’m not going to get into specifics. Only to say, I thought I was extremely knowledgeable about a certain subject.

I read numerous articles. Discussed the topic with other likeminded people. Even became experienced through trial and error.

There were times I became frustrated when things didn’t turn out exactly I had envisioned. “I did it exactly according to the book!” I’d tell myself.

Then, one day, I found myself in the middle of an important situation.

As I saw the series of events unfolding, I felt confident in that I simply went with what I learned. This felt comfortable, I thought. I didn’t deviate from the -playbook.- I was heading down the right path.

Then, I felt uneasy. The end game I visualized wasn’t happening. In fact, I really didn’t like the way the scene was unfolding. My emotional intelligence telegraphed I needed to change the flow of the moment.

Something inside told me I wasn’t being true to myself and the other people involved. My actions seemed preprogrammed. Robot like. 

My favorite word when it comes to leadership is authentic. Being true to who you are. I wasn’t living up to the standard I’d set for others.

I had to ask myself an important question.

“What’s the truth here?”

When I heard my answer:

I threw the playbook out the window and went with my Intuition.

As soon as I went with my feelings, things began to flow. I became vulnerable and a high definition picture began to emerge. The other people involved connected with me and we all became one within the flow.

There’s times when you’re in the moment and you simply have to go in another direction vs. what the text book taught you.

People that can do this with clarity and finesse possess a high degree of emotional intelligence, also known as emotional quotient.

This is why improving your emotional intelligence is so important for increasing your performance.

The next time you’re in a situation where you’re at a standstill, stop to listen to the little voice that’s telling you to move in another direction. Pause. Reflect. Then go with your gut.

Describe a time when your intuition said to change directions.


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