There’s this myth going around through the many inspirational quotes posted on Facebook, that if you just listen to your inner voice, listen to your heart, it will tell you the answer to all the questions you have. What outfit to wear, which partner to choose, what to study, which job to take, or the place of the hidden treasure of Captain Crossbow. And you’ll be happy ever after.

While there certainly is some truth to that, it’s not that easy.

I tried this intensely early on in my personal development career. When I had even the smallest decision to make (which food to eat first, which direction to turn to on a walk) I would pause and tune in to my inner voice, and what mostly happened was – nothing. Or chaos.

That’s when I realized: There is not this one central voice that tells you what to do. There are many different voices.

You have many desires, many different needs, and each of them has its own voice. They’re mostly silent (when they’re sufficiently met that is), but at most of the important decisions, there is more than one voice, and usually those voices don’t agree right away.

Listening to your heart doesn’t alleviate you of the burden of having to analyze yourself, finding out what your actual needs are and coming up with strategies that meet as many needs as possible (ideally all of them).

That’s if you want to make a decision that makes you happy for longer than 5 minutes.

You cannot turn your brain off (even though many new-age people would like to). You need to let brain, heart and intuition become a team. (Here’s a technique that helps you do that.)

What a bummer. What an empowering thing to know.

Are you following your heart?

(This is the article of day 6 of the 30 day blog challenge. To be notified of new posts, subscribe to the mailinglist on the right.)