Is it Anxiety or Intuition? (Part I)
I feel we sometimes confuse anxiety with our intuition and instinct so I thought it was time to chat about it.
I have had many examples of this ever since I was a child. I would have so much anxiety and most times, my worry was a waste of energy and time.
However, there have been cases where I look back and it really was my intuition trying to tell me something, yet it showed up as anxiety.
I thought I would share my most recent experiences to see if you can relate:
1. Health Issues/Fears You may know that I have had some frustrating health issues over the past few years. It is too much to get into right here, but I want to share a bit about my experience.
When I started going to nutrition school and improving my health, so much changed for the better. Even my anxiety, mood and energy were noticeably different. However, I was still struggling with digestive and hormonal issues. I saw my doctor multiple times and was even referred to specialists who said I was fine because I was thin, had normal blood pressure and blood work, etc.
However, I didn't FEEL fine.
I was feeling anxious because I had a feeling something wasn't right. Or was I just anxious and causing my health issues?! Hypochondriac? Over-reacting?
I kept trying holistic methods since my doctors were useless (acupuncture, herbs, cleanses, craniosacral therapy, energy work, colonics, visualizations, and so on). They would only help me feel better temporarily and that's when I really knew something more was going on.
Fast forward a few years later and I did NOT give up, when many people would have. Believe me, I thought about it.
I was again referred to specialists who prescribed me medications without getting to the root cause. I knew this didn't feel right so I kept researching and meditating. I finally paid out of pocket (cha-ching) for tests my doctors refused to do. I was diagnosed with SIBO and mild PCOS. These are very complicated issues that wreak havoc on the body if not diagnosed and treated. They increase risk for cancer, diabetes, autoimmune, nutrient malabsorption, and more.
All along my intuition was trying to tell me something more was going on. I was trying to trust the professionals, yet I knew my body better than anyone. (I'll share even more at a later point)
2. Puppy Worry
A few weeks ago, my husband and I were both rushing out of the house for appointments. (Things are a bit more chaotic with a happy puppy!)
I got our puppy, Dusty, settled in his crate. When I was driving away, I had a strange feeling and anxious thoughts started to come through like:
“Is Dusty’s crate locked?”
I almost turned around, but thought my anxiety was just getting the best of me. I called my husband to see how far he was and he said he didn’t have time to turn around and that the dogs were fine. (He is not the worrier in the family, clearly!)
I kept going and tried to trust...
I called my dad as I often do while driving in the morning. He mentioned he was going to an appointment right near me house so I asked him if he wanted to stop by and check on the dogs since I wouldn’t be home for a couple hours. Sure enough, our puppy greeted him at the door! There were socks everywhere, but not as much destruction as there could’ve been. And luckily, the pup was fine.
I guess I didn’t lock the crate tightly and knew it.
3. Interrupted Sleep
A couple of months ago, my mom wasn’t feeling well. I got worried and kept calling to check-in and she told me to go to bed. Well, around 2 am I woke up with such anxiety! I could not fall back to sleep and I had a feeling something happened. Then there was a little thunder and so I thought that must have woke me. Suddenly there were red flashing lights and an ambulance was at my 92 year old neighbor’s house, as they often are.
I wondered if that was a “sign”. I wanted to call my parents to see if my mom was in the hospital, but I didn’t want to wake them if it was just my anxiety taking over my mind. (I felt a bit crazy)
The next morning, my dad called to say my mom was okay, but she was in the hospital. I guess my anxiety was intuitively telling me something.
The point is that I totally understand anxiety and the worry and fear that comes with it. We create such negative thoughts and most often, they don’t happen.
But there are some cases where we have intuition that is trying to let us know something more is going on.
So, how do we tell the difference? I am clearly still working on this myself, but I do think the body can sense more than we give it credit for.
I have spent the past decade studying panic/worry as well as intuition and signs.
Stay tuned for Part II, where I share my favorite tips for distinguishing anxiety and intuition.
As always, I'd love to hear from you. Comment below to let me know if you've ever confused anxiety and intuition...Or click here to schedule a call to discuss this.