Inside of all of us, there is a Wisdom. You were born with it. We all have the capacity to tap into our Wisdom.

Every first session I have with people, I ask these two questions. Do you think you are wise? Are you in a relationship with your wisdom? Most people answer yes the the first question and no to the second one.

In 1991 I had a therapist who asked me if I thought I was wise. I was 28 years old at the time and my life was in chaos, I definitely did not believe that I was wise. In fact, I thought I was a mess. She told me I had a “part” of me that knew what I needed. She also said that this part of me knew what I wanted and how to get it.

I could not fathom the idea that I might have a pearl of wisdom inside, I loathed most of what was inside. I was going to see her because I “knew” that something was wrong with me. I was unhappy and I had no idea how to find happiness. I felt like I was a terrible mother, a terrible partner, a terrible friend, and daughter. I just wanted to curl up and hide. I was immersed in many behaviours I didn’t like and my relationship was falling apart. We were abusive to each other and we had no idea how to connect, how to be respectful and compassionate toward each other.

She was fantastic at doing her job. She didn’t give me a lot of answers, she just kept saying that the answers were inside of me. She also didn’t tell me how to get inside to find them. She just told me the answers were there.

Unbeknownst to me, I then embarked on a journey to find this part of myself.

I had loads of reasons to convince myself that I wasn’t worthy of much, that “other” people got that break not me. However, her comment did make me curious because at short minute intervals in my life I did hear a whisper inside telling me that I had choices. Sometimes it was so hard to hear over the chatter in my head. The chatter would convince me that the little voice wasn’t “right”. Another part of me would counter act with fear and a reason why I shouldn’t do what I had heard. I had every excuse in the book. I was keeping myself safe.

My journey took me in many directions. I was seeking something, anything that would help me to “feel” better about how I experienced myself. I immersed myself in different cultures, women’s groups, yoga (kundalini was my favourite), I went to school seeking the answers, therapy, reading books, friends, art, journalling, deep conversations with others, deep breathing groups, networking groups, my relationships, and even my children. They all gave me relief and they all got me closer.

The thing that has brought me the closest to my myself is YOU. Working as a therapist is a great privilege, many of you have heard me say……..

“My wisdom and your wisdom get into cahoots with each other to help us explore your parts”.

Finding your wisdom takes practice. As a therapist, I had to begin to practice what I was preaching. I want to share five essential things I have learned about Wisdom.

Curiosity is one of the main pathways to this part of us. Continuing to hone in on this skill gets us closer. Being curious , we can get quiet, go inside, and practice listening.


Can you think of a time where you were able to hear this part of you?

Have you ever been sitting alone, and all of a sudden, there is a small voice at the back of your head saying something to you? Or maybe you’re holding something that could break, you hear, “be careful.” Thinking, “I should put this down before it breaks.”

How about a time when your body moved to catch a ball before you even registered there is a ball.

Have you ever been driving and you hear, “get off at this exit”. You don’t, and within moments you are caught in a traffic back up for 45 minutes.

I remember a time long ago, I was going to wash some windows. I grabbed and lawn chair to step up (because I am short). I CLEARLY heard, “don’t do that”. Well I did it, I fell through the chair, rolled off the front porch and torn my arm apart.

Many of you have already begun the journey of finding your wisdom. I have the pleasure of being a part of that. Just last week, I was sitting with one of you, you asked me a question. I said my standard “how about you ask yourself the question first before I answer”. You closed your eyes, went inside for a moment, opened your eyes with a smile on your face. I asked, “what did you hear”? You said the exact same thing I would have said verbatim. We both laughed.

This voice is always present and available to us; it’s the part of you looking out for your best interest and has the answers to all of the questions you are asking.

Wisdom is the conscious and unconscious information that allows us to make empowered decisions and choose the best option. Therefore to build this relationship, we must know this part of ourselves and cultivate a relationship.

Wisdom is astute and already knows the questions you are asking

Wisdom has always been there, but this part is often slower, quieter, and less activated than our other parts (defences). To find the answers to our questions, we need to go inward, get quiet and listen. The answers will come if we leave space for Wisdom to show up. Sometimes that space can take a while.

Just last week I was celebrating with someone, we have been working toward creating a connection with their Wisdom for over a year. When we met, they believed that they did not have a part of them that wise. They have since spent many hours/days/months going inside to find the quite whisper that slowly began to get louder.

Wisdom is different from bias or belief

Wisdom does not hold judgements or assumptions; Wisdom is impartial and does not choose something based on bias or beliefs. This process can be information to sort through before we make a decision. We need to be aware of these bias and belief traps that one can fall into, such as the anchoring effect or the first instinct fallacy.

Our Wisdom is not just the first voice we hear. A relationship with Wisdom happens when we can look from all sides, gather, information and then go within to ask what is best for us based on all the information.

I will ask people, what is your highest thought about this? I will also ask them to listen to all sides of the internal discussion, notice what feelings arise with each thought you have. It is a slow process to allow all parts of you to chime in with what opinions. I then ask, what though brings you joy?

Sometimes people will say none of it brings me joy. I say okay, which thought scares you the most? We then break down the fears and often the joy is hiding behind a fear or the joy hasn’t been experienced yet because the fear is keeping you in a “safe” place.

Sometimes comfort can prevent you from finding your joy. We have a tendency to stay in our comfort zone and that can prevent our connection with Wisdom.

Getting to know Wisdom takes practice

The more that we connect with our Wisdom, the more we will get to know this part and, therefore, the better the relationship will be. The practice is to gather concrete data in many different areas of our lives that inform our decisions. Sometimes we have to listen to the chatter inside first.

Several years ago I read a book by Robert Fulghum – Everything I learned I learned in Kindergarten. He talks about a committee in our heads. “Oh how I related to that”. The committee sometimes has a lot to say. Weeding through the nuances of our chatter (thoughts and feelings) is probably the hardest part of connecting to your Wisdom.

We need to access mind and body. Ask yourself, “what do I think about this?” “how do I feel about this?”

Wisdom has always been there, but over our lifetimes, we often hear messages that quiet this voice, and so the more we listen and learn, the more our Wisdom can become our guiding voice.

Wisdom uses both our insight and sense attributes

Wisdom uses insight, which gathers information (both past and present) and sense, which is the feelings we get about a situation or that “gut feeling.” Wisdom can integrate the data we collect and our initial feeling about a problem and make it possible for us to make a well-informed decision about just about anything. By Wisdom integrating both knowledge and emotion, it is a more well-rounded conclusion.


Interoception is a tool we can use, it is defined as the sense of the internal state of the whole body. Our bodies and brain have a communication pathway and this pathway allows us to sense what our body is communicating. This ability is one of the senses that we can access to find our Wisdom. Interoception works by directing attention towards the sensation. Our bodies are giving us signals all the time and when we place attention toward those signals, and we “stay with” then suddenly we can begin to hear words, ideas, and suggestions that are coming from within us.

When I am helping someone explore their inner world, I will ask them to “stay” with the sensation. We then ask, “is there a word or urge that comes up when you sit with this experience”? This begins the process of connection to sensing and insight.

Attach, Flight, Fight, and Freeze is NOT your Wisdom

Attach, Flight, Fight and Freeze is not your Wisdom; just because their answer comes first or seems the “most likely response” doesn’t mean that this is your Wisdom talking.

Most likely, the first answer won’t be Wisdom; Wisdom often needs time and reflection to come up with an answer that is best for us. Wisdom does not answer quickly to stress; in fact, when we are stressed, it is unlikely we will be able to hear Wisdom’s answer because our central nervous system (defensive system) is responding to stress instead. So when the stress response happens, we need to get back in our Window of Tolerance and then ask Wisdom for guidance.

So often I am asked “HOW” do I do this then?

There are several activities you can “do” that will help you connect.


Sitting quietly and asking

Tracking sensations and logging them

Asking out loud

Talking to friends and family

Drawing what you think this part of you looks like

Watching videos and following others that are doing “wisdom” work

Joining a community that is also seeking this part of themselves

Attending therapy with a therapist

Sit in a state of “doing nothing” notice what happens

This relationship is life-long and will allow us to respond to our life more positively and improve our overall satisfaction.

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