The inner whisper. It's the voice inside of us that reflects our deepest desires and biggest dreams. It's the voice that starts oh-so-quietly, sometimes to the point that we can barely hear it.
Over time, the inner whisper gets louder and louder, begging us to tune in and listen. Begging us to at least acknowledge that it exists, even if we aren't yet ready to take action.
I was talking to a wonderful new client earlier this week who described his inner whisper as evolving from a "low simmer to a raging boil." This is the power of the inner whisper; over time, it strengthens until we have no choice but to listen.
It often feels scary - terrifying, even - to tune into our inner whisper. Our inner whisper reflects what we really want, which is often different than what we're currently doing.
For my entire life, my inner whisper longed to teach and create. These are the things I would do every single day as a little girl. I began ignoring my inner whisper during my junior year of high school, on precisely the day that one of my high school teachers told me to "apply to business school because it's harder to get into" instead of applying to the programs I was considering. I continued to ignore my inner whisper throughout college, and on and off throughout many of my years in the corporate world, until finally, one day, I decided it was time to listen.
While I don't regret and am incredibly grateful for my path which led me to today, I find it amusing to look back and realize that I had more clarity about the desires of my inner whisper when I was four years old than when I was 24. This is true for many of my clients as well; often, we can gain powerful insight about the desires of our inner whisper by looking at the things we were drawn to when we were little.
If you think your inner whisper might be trying to speak to you, here are a few ways to tune in.
- Take 2 minutes per day to get quiet and be still. It's easy to squash the desires of the inner whisper underneath tasks and the whirlwind of everyday life. The inner whisper needs space to be heard.
- Ask yourself the question, "what do I deeply desire?" Write down your response, without filtering what comes up. Write down everything that you hear, even if it seems crazy or out of reach.
- Ask yourself the question, "if anything is possible, what would I most love to do?" Once again, write down the answers without filtering what comes up.
- Ask yourself, "if I could be guaranteed my same salary for the next year and could either a) do exactly what I'm doing now, or b) try something entirely different, what would I do?" Again, write down what comes up without filtering or judging your answer.
- After you reflect on the above questions, askyourself, "what is one what that I could honor my inner whisper now, in a small way?" This might mean signing up for a class, going on a micro adventure, learning a new skill, or volunteering.
There is a voice inside of you
That whispers all day long,
"I feel this is right for me,
I know that this is wrong."
No teacher, preacher, parent, friend
Or wise man can decide
What's right for you--just listen to
The voice that speaks inside.
― Shel Silverstein