We’ve coined a new phrase at Happynesshub HQ – it’s called The Archie Moment. And it stems from my meeting the new love of my life, little Archie Archibald, as many of you will have read in last week’s blog. Archie (my new Black Lab, 7 weeks old, arriving at my house in 10 days time!) had been in my head, my dreams, my visualisations, my heart for about 4 years now. But each time I went to get a dog, I had a million reasons why it wasn’t the right decision: my lifestyle, my work, my health, my obsessive cleanliness! There was never a right time.

And then as you may well have read, whatever paths led me to meeting little Archie that fateful Sunday, I knew it was meant to be. No matter how many challenges I may be facing, Archie, I was sure, certain, without any doubt whatsoever, was supposed to enter my life.

Now… many will say it was a decision of the heart (who couldn’t fall in love with those gooey eyes?). Certainly my head was repeatedly saying no. I like to think, however, it was something different from this.

Rewind 6 weeks ago and I was sitting on the sofa at my house needing to make a decision about whether to fly out to India in 3 weeks time to speak at a conference. I was in pain post surgery, at the time eating only houmous and scrambled egg, and had barely left my house in weeks. Despite wanting to attend this event for multiple reasons, my head said no (as did my colleagues, my parents and my friends!). My heart, heavily, was also screaming no – I couldn’t really do that to myself when I was so weak. But there was a strong gut feeling… an emotion, drive, quiet voice in my head, that said – go to Bangalore. I couldn’t quite place where it was coming from, but every time I calmly quietened my mind, and thought about Bangalore, I felt I needed to be there. So against all logic and rationale, I decided to go.

Now I’ve been lucky enough to have been working for a while now with a very special lady, who has been supporting me in moving forward personally and professionally. Her name is Claire, and it has been a privilege to have such a beacon of light in my life.

She has explained to me, that our brains have a default state – in that, when we are (for example) faced with a challenge, problem or decision, we automatically act within an unconscious default mode, which taps into things we already know – and we then act accordingly. So say I have a problem at work, I engage in past patterns of behaviour and thinking to find a solution. This can be really useful – our default brain helps us make decisions and get through daily life – these learnt skills and processes are essential. But… Claire has worked with me to look beyond this – the default brain still plays a role, but a smaller one – and I am now tapping into what I like to call my intuition.

And indeed, what I have found is that in situations when I am really unsure about what decision to make, where to take my life, what I should do – I close my eyes, I breathe, I quieten my mind (Claire has taught me a technique) and I connect with a feeling, an image, a knowing. Sometimes, as with Archie, my whole body knew Lord Archibald was coming home. And I have that occasionally when I meet potential new staff – as I shake their hand ‘the Archie Moment’ hits me. I want them to join our team!

At other times, that potential colleague’s CV isn’t right, they’ve not got quite enough experience, their interview wasn’t as strong as others – and I am just not sure. And so, I tap into my intuition. It’s not a decision of the head or of the heart. It’s something slightly different. A knowing, from deep down inside me, an unknown place of peace and understanding, and when I tap into that space, the answers arise.

So, how was India? Well as many of you will have read it was the best decision ever. Yes I was a tad unwell out there; and pretty unwell on the way home. But… despite all the challenges it was a transformative trip – personally, professionally and everything-ly. I wouldn’t change it for the world. Against all the odds my intuition was right.

And Archie – well, you’ll have to wait and see on that one. But I’m pretty sure there are going to be some Happynesshub Archie blogs coming your way soon!

So, whether it’s something big like switching jobs or moving house or it could be something much smaller like ‘shall I go to that party tonight?’ – I would urge you to quieten your mind and ask your intuition. And when those Archie Moments hit you – run with them with all your heart (and head and intuition) and enjoy every second! (9 sleeps to go here until my life changes forever!).