The popular myth is that feelings are entirely hormonal and personal…and, to some extent that assertion is correct when dealing with personal matters. But feelings, intuitions, suspicions so often are proven correct that we still attribute weight to our feelings despite admiration for the logic of Spock or the focus of stone-cold action heroes – and despite the new appreciation for data driven statements of fact due to the computer age. And so we should. In fact, we really should give more weight to our feelings if, for no other reason, hard, irrefutable information is not always available. Facts are hard to discern. Truth is real but elusive. We just ain’t that smart or educated. We live in confusing times.
Back in the 70’s and 80’s there was a New York based consulting group serving the advertising business. My hazy memory wants to call them, Goldman, Goldman and Goldman Associates. Maybe three Goldbergs? But Google doesn’t confirm that…..
Anyway, the lesson from G,G&G was ‘inferential scanning’. It seems we all do it (look around and intuit, infer, learn) but we all do it and accept the ‘feelings’ we get at different personal levels. Inferential scanning is the term they used to describe our conscious and unconscious absorption of information that we discern simply by walking around, living and looking at stuff.
The best example they proffered was, “Ask anyone what they think is the most popular colour for cars on the road. Of course, everyone will at first say, ‘Oh, I dunno…..how could I know? But, if I had to guess, it would be white? Or grey?” Typically, they were right (for their area).
The point was that they did not know from any proven facts or learned discipline or even a TV show or media article but they still had a hint or a suggestion of an answer. How did they get even that? Well, by GGG hypothesis, it was by inferential scanning – the natural absorption of random bits of information.
Intuition does not come from the hairs on the back of your neck – it comes from indirect learning and constant but immediate observation. And that plays out in so many interesting ways. Sal and I once avoided a car hijacking in Mexico simply because we both felt at the same time that ‘something is not right here’ and we turned the car around only to read in the English newspaper a week later that there had been many hijackings, robberies and such in that very stretch of road. Our instincts saved us.
And years ago, my instincts started whispering to me that I should quit working and go live away from the city – and that seemed to mean move off the grid. Those whispered hints went ignored for a few years but started to show results when I began almost out of amusement to read about OTG living. In fact, I wrote in our book about an hysterical article in Mother Earth News on birthing lambs and having to mouth-suck the snot out of the newborn’s nose or else they couldn’t breathe. That, alone should have put me off the OTG path!
This is taking too much of your time so I’ll get to the punchline: everyone has feelings, intuition, deep-set curiosity or even (if you are more focused) dreams and plans. Acting on those dreams and ‘feelings’ is hard to do. What if? How do I? Why? Cost? Is there a You Tube on it? What will my spouse say?
The most common response? “Maybe later…..kinda busy right now. “
Those feelings (if you have them) will persist because they are not based on hard information, education or even logic. They are based on inferential scanning or, better-put perhaps, observing life as you know it. And the ‘life-as-you-know-it’ is changing. You do not need to rely on feelings to understand that part. The latest IPCC report (Climate Change Scientists) is making a very clear clarion call for HELP and ACTION NOW!
The planet is changing. Fast!
Please do not read this as Dave being smug. In fact, the opposite is true. My inferential inner voice was warning me, to be sure. And I listened as I should have. But I am no better at interpreting intuition or feelings than anyone else and likely not as good as some. In fact, I think we erred. We did good but we did not do good enough. More than a few times Sal and I have jokingly referred to our relocation as ‘perhaps we’re not far enough away!’
Having feelings and listening to them doesn’t mean you are right in all regards. It may be that a remote island up the BC coast might not be enough of a retreat. It is hard to run and hide from climate and it seems the climate is out to get us all.
Let’s face it, y’all know this at some level. Y’all feel the changes, feel the threats, feel the general unease (or smoke) in the air. There is, of course, inferential quasi-proof in millions of people migrating north, polar bears starving, wild fires like never before, Covid, floods, altering ocean currents and patterns, wildlife die-offs….the list just goes on and on…..we know this is a time of major shift, a change in the status quo. Hell, a lot of people do not even want to go back to work to get their money, money, money! This is now almost TEOTWAWKI (the end of the world as we know it) and they sense something….. But now we have harder, data-driven proof, too. The IPCC report is alarming. If you didn’t feel it before, you can now read about it on your computer.
I guess what I am saying is: it might be time to have a heart-to-heart chat with your inner voice.