What Is Intuition? Is it the same as being psychic? Let's look

Intuition, gut reaction, natural response, there are probably a whole host of ways to describe the same thing. You may have an entirely different concept of intuition, and belief around whether you are intuitive or not. But here are some of my thoughts on what intuition is.

Intuition Is That Quiet Inner Voice…

You know the one,

  • the little niggle that says to take the ‘other’ route to work this morning.
  • the funny feeling that this person isn’t quite what they say they are.
  • the internal nudge that you need to do something specific
  • the sudden thought that just pops into your head

What Intuition Isn’t

This quiet inner voice called intuition can often get confused with the louder voice of our inner fears. You know the one: you’re taking a shortcut, it’s dark, there’s no-one around and you start to feel anxious. What if…?

Often this is your inner fear.

It comes from an inbuilt survival mechanism. And it comes from the programming we have all had, often with good reason, over the years. This keeps us aware, stops us taking risks (well, not too many anyway) and it’s a way to keep safe. But sometimes it has an interference effect on our intuition. When I’ve been in this situation, once I acknowledged it, (put some energetic protection up just in case) and relaxed, I felt fine.

I’ve been in other situations where my intuition has told me to get out, and it’s a very different feeling. The difficulty is to learn to differentiate between the two. However, if you’re ever in any doubt – just get out! It’s always better to be wrong and feel a bit silly than ignore something and wind up in trouble. In fact, this is an in built mechanism in all animals, prepare for the worst, be ready to run or fight, but move on quickly once we realise we are ok.

Is Intuition The Same As Being Psychic?

I do think there’s sometimes a cross-over between the two, but not always. I’ve always said that there is a spectrum of ‘inner knowing’, which includes our survival instincts already mentioned, our intuition and our psychic ability.

Let’s look at different ways of ‘inner knowing’ that are on my spectrum. Here’s a visual:


what is intuition?
Gut Instinct

I’ve already mentioned fear-based instincts. These are primal and linked with our survival instinct. They are are a form of inner knowing, but are often wrong. As I mentioned, it’s better to be alive and wrong about ‘that sound in the jungle’, than dismiss it and get eaten by a tiger!. These fall in to the lower, red section of my visual.


Then there’s the first level of intuition. (The green section of the visual guide.) Maybe we could call it instinctive intuition. This is the idea that our intuitive reaction is bought about by our subconscious quickly processing information around us that our conscious mind may not register, cross referencing it with stored memories of previous situations, and coming up with a possible outcome for the situation. If you’re a driver I’m sure you’ve experienced it. Something tells you to change lanes, brake or similar, instinctively knowing what the other driver is about to do. They do it, and you think ‘yeah, I knew they were gonna do that!’.

Then there are the times when we intuitively know what’s going to happen, or to do (or not do) something, where the situation is entirely unpredictable. Maybe a person does something completely out of character that you could not foresee in any way, and yet, you knew to do something that put you or others out of harms way. Is it that you’re picking up a vibe, just a sense that something is off? This is where things start to merge with the next type of knowing because I’m still unsure whether this incorporates a degree of psychic awareness. I think for some people it does and for some it doesn’t. This starts in the green area and overlaps with the purple. Often our brain creates a reason or tells us something is off, but there’s no way it could know why – this is why I’ve called it cognitively constructed

Psychic Knowing

Next there is the level at which your intuition reacts without external influences. You’re not even in the room, or with the person and yet you know. You have to call them, or you just feel you need to get to them somehow. This is what I would call psychic intuition.

I believe it’s part of the human condition to want to label, analyse and understand things, which is why I have tried to categorise things here for you. However, I don’t think it’s entirely necessary to agree with my theory, or even to understand it in order to feel that you are in any way intuitive.

Intuition can be very powerful, I call it our on-board inner guidance system. But I know for some it’s louder than it is for others. I hope that by starting to understand it more, by thinking about the possibilities, by acknowledging it on some level as a possibility, you may begin to reconnect with your intuition on a deeper level. After all, when we understand a loved one better, we can connect in a more intimate way, and better understand the way they communicate, and why they do the things they do. I hope that this can also be the case for you and you intuition so that you can have a better relationship as you navigate life together.

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Helen Leathers

Transformational Women's Coach, Trainer, Speaker & Author

Combining a spiritual outlook, a pragmatic approach, and a sense of humour I want to help you remember who YOU are and reveal YOUR path so you can step on to it empowered, energised, inspired and guided.

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