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Thread: Intuition

  1. #1
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    Intuition

    I had that instinctive feeling a few weeks ago when I had at short notice to cover a girl on a couple of morning shifts(instead of evening shifts) that she is pregnant. She doesn?t know that I know, but a couple of days ago I overheard her talking to some of the girls in the shop that she had just had a scan.
    To make clear
    Sorry about that. I mean it in the sense that as a male I should not be able intuitively be able to pick things like that up, while girls do it easily. I was just wondering whether other members of this forum intuitively work things out.
    Last edited by Di; 10-15-2020 at 06:23 AM. Reason: To make clear

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Teresa's Avatar
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    Fiona,
    Perhaps call it a sixth sense .

    I suppose if I was heading for a scan in that context it would be more than sixth sense telling something is no right .
    The real me ,no going back.

  3. #3
    Senior Member phili's Avatar
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    Hi Finna,
    I do feel that the liberation my emotions so I could feel them has greatly increased the nuance of my intuitions! I'd say I have more words and more detail now, and more ability to wonder if I'm right or,..,not!
    We are all beautiful...!

  4. #4
    Aspiring Member GretchenM's Avatar
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    Intuition, as we call it, is derived from a well developed empathy characteristic. People who are more empathic can sense things in others more precisely than others. Sixth sense? Kind of, yes. Males can be that way just as effectively as females, but it is a much, much more common characteristic in females than males. It is one of those traits and characteristics that tend to distinguish males and females, but it is in no way confined to only females. Naturally, a person whose identity leans more toward the female may have a stronger empathy than someone who is not. Empathy is very important to loving and caring relationships and females tend to be more relationship oriented than males, but, once again, it is not an exclusively female gift.

    Empathy is a very important behavior as it allows us to sense a bit of how someone else feels and that leads to expressions of sympathy and compassion. Those expressions are very important in maintaining a peaceful and functioning society where people care about others.

  5. #5
    Platinum Member kimdl93's Avatar
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    There has actually been a good deal of research on intuition. Unfortunately, male or female, humans tend to think they are intuitive, but in practice are profoundly bad at it.

    Easy come, easy go;
    Easy left me long ago...

  6. #6
    Silver Member Meghan4now's Avatar
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    Hmmm,

    Interesting. I may be mistaken (known to happen), but I feel that I've relied on intuition most of my life. Odd for an engineer, but really part of intuition is the subconscious processing of input to and pattern matching to previous experience, then extrapolating to provide an estimate.

    While engineers and other science/physical based proffesions live by the motto "Data Driven" there is no doubt that many very quick and successful people can gauge a solution prior to verification. For example, the ability to eyeball thicknesses, sizes, and materials.

    On the other hand, maybe my propensity to rely on intuition may dovetail with what Gretchen is talking about, and has something to do with my gender non-conformity?
    Put on a Happy Face.

  7. #7
    Silver Member Micki_Finn's Avatar
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    This has nothing to do with gender and everything to do with how observant you are.

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    Being observant, able to listen, and empathetic all help with intuition. If crows dressing helps make you better at those things, congratulations on finding a way to be a more intuned person.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Asew's Avatar
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    Isn't it a well used tv trope that someone pregnant on tv is sick in the mornings before revealing they are pregnant...

  10. #10
    Silver Member Meghan4now's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Micki_Finn View Post
    This has nothing to do with gender and everything to do with how observant you are.
    Micki,

    I can't say either way. The brain's function and response is pretty complicated. Many behaviors that are attributed to "gender" have been formed by socialization per the assignment of gender at birth based on observed primary sexual characteristics. But there are some behaviors that might be influenced through continued biochemical factors. I've read that the observation of color and smell can be influenced by hormones. If this is true, then certain types of observations may vary by sex, but in a statistically distributed way.

    I can not say with any certainty that the experience of intuitive thinking is linked to this, but it is a fascinating topic, and has enough anecdotal evidence to at least pose a meaningful question.

    Also consider that even if it is not a biologically derived trait, thinking disciplines can be taught and reinforced. If girls are taught to rely on women's intuition, and boys are taught to be critical thinkers, then this surely will have some effect.
    Last edited by Meghan4now; 10-15-2020 at 10:40 AM.
    Put on a Happy Face.

  11. #11
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    Women's intuition is a myth...

    Intuition is just knowing how to read people. When that ability comes naturally or easily it's called intuition.

    I believe women are better at it because they pay attention to the little details that men ignore because men think they already know everything.
    Last edited by Robertacd; 10-15-2020 at 12:34 PM.

  12. #12
    Member Marianne S's Avatar
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    What a great subject!

    "Intuition" is simply "unconscious thinking," as Meghan said. The mind processes information below the level of consciousness, puts a load of clues together, and does a lot of pattern matching. Then suddenly, bingo! a realization pops into mind. We "know" something--but we don't know how or why we know it, because the process of mentation that led to it was not consciously accessible.

    Some people may be "more intuitive" than others--or anyway rely on their sense of intuition more than others do. This difference shows up in the Myers-Briggs personality test, but I don't know of any overall sex difference in the tendency to register as "intuitive." The only place where a marked sex difference shows up in that test is in "thinking" versus "feeling." More men are "thinkers," while more women are "feelers."

    In all probability men are just as "intuitive" as women are. A great many tasks in life could not be performed without some degree of intuition. Mathematics for example: we couldn't reduce a complex expression without spotting a "pattern" in it. For that matter we couldn't solve any problem without "intuitively" grasping what "kind" of problem this is; what "model" does it fit, and how do we solve problems of that "kind"? We don't do this by consciously going through a list of all possible "problem types" in our mind, which could take forever. "Intuition" does it for us.

    As far as sex differences are concerned, I'd say the only real difference is the sphere of life in which intuition is operating. What people call "women's" intuition invariably concerns people and their behavior. For instance, a quiz designed to test gender-related differences asked: "If you were seated at a dinner table among a number of guests, could you tell if two of them were secretly having an affair?"

    However, as one or two members here have pointed out, "intuition" needs data to arrive at these conclusions, and that in turn depends on how observant we are of certain clues. Much of this "observation" is habitual and subconscious in itself. We notice things without necessarily being aware of what we've noticed.

    That's where sex differences play a part. In psychological terms, the fundamental difference between men and women is that men on the whole have evolved more to survive in a physical universe, while women on the whole have evolved more to survive in a social universe.

    Needless to say, we all have to survive in both universes up to a point, so there's plenty of overlap in those spheres. Not to mention all the usual random variations! Just the same, the tendencies are there, statistically at least. More women than men are good at figuring things out about people, where men "haven't a clue." And I do mean "haven't a clue" in the literal sense of the words, which I'll get to in a moment. Meanwhile, more men than women are good at figuring out mechanical things, for instance, like "what's wrong with a car." Where many women are at a loss, understanding of the problem comes instantly to a man. In those fields, many women "haven't a clue" either, because they haven't been in the habit of noticing or thinking about the things men do.

    I'm sure this depends in part on what kinds of things we notice, on where our focus lies, and how much thinking we've done about them. A few weeks ago I had the bad luck to be stranded by a breakdown in my car. Even as it ground to a halt, I had a pretty good idea why it had stopped running, I was sure it was down to the alternator in the end. Actually it wasn't the alternator, just the belt that drove it, but I'd been "putting clues together" along the way, and the "general idea" was right.

    That's often true of intuition. It's not always "dead right," but the general idea is right. Admittedly too, I can't call this "unconscious" thinking. However, what we observe and think about does get stored in our mind, and it stays there as a treasury of data, "grist for the mill" of our intuitive faculties.

    A girlfriend of mine from long ago told me things I didn't even know about myself--but I had to acknowledge were true! Although we didn't end up as permanent partners, I still remember Diana with great affection--and also with respect! She was extremely intuitive. An example of what she told me was this. Without wanting to offend anyone, we know how many men have a "special" attraction to certain parts of a woman's body. Sometimes this can become extreme; there are "hair fetishists," "foot fetishists" and so on. But some degree of this is normal enough. In particular, two most prominent types are "breast men" and "leg men." Well, I always thought I was a more of a "breast man"--not that it matters anyway. But Diana, quite out of the blue, one day remarked: "You're a hip man!"

    And do you know, she was right! It was also rather nice to be told that we're "hip," in the language of long ago. But hey, "hips" are sexy! Why else have men referred to women as "broads"? And I recalled instantly the first girl I had a colossal crush on when I was twelve years old--she was a year older, her name was Maureen, she had golden hair and a beautifully mature figure for her age--and the enticing way her bag of school books, strapped over her shoulder, bounced off her hip as she walked. I fell in love!

    It didn't go anywhere. She wasn't interested in me, sadly got pregnant by a guitar player named Bert, and had to leave school at fifteen. I hope she had a good enough life. But my whole point in mentioning this was to highlight the details of what Diana must have been observing to figure this out about me. She had obviously registered what my eyes were focused on at least some of the time: her sexy hips!

    This is only a subtler version of what some women complain about: namely, men who "talk to their chests." I don't believe I'm guilty of anything like that. I'd far rather prefer to talk to anyone's face. But there are always those glances as we "take a person in." I don't notice shoes, for example, in the way that some people do. And when it comes to "gaydar," I recall reading in John Rechy's book The Sexual Outlaw something like "that glance from the face to the crotch and back again is a dead giveaway that a man is gay. I wouldn't even dream of glancing at a man's crotch--or of noticing whether he was glancing at mine! If I ever noticed he was glancing down, I'd probably think he'd spotted something on the floor that attracted his attention! That's how "intuition" works in some people, without the rest of us knowing what's going on or why, and without even thinking about it.

    In the same way, while driving with my wife, I'd notice black skid marks on the highway--often ending abruptly at the crash barrier on the median--and registered that a nasty collision had occurred there. She rarely noticed them at all, and I had to point them out to her. But that's in the physical universe.

    So I don't doubt my "gaydar" is sadly deficient, because of what I don't notice, or was never motivated to look at in the first place! But the same is true in broader fields.

    A crime investigation in wartime Britain highlighted the differences between what males notice and what females notice. It was about the identity of a man driving an Army truck (or "lorry," as it was called there) seen by several children around eleven years old. The girls who gave evidence were able to tell the police a great deal about the man who drove it. He was about twenty-six years old. He had "medium-colored" hair, a reddish complexion; he wore steel-rimmed eyeglasses, and other valuable details. But they were unable to help much about the "lorry."

    The boys on the other hand hardly noticed the driver. But they could tell police everything they'd noticed about the "lorry" itself. It was "a fifteen-hundredweight Fordson, camouflaged to look like a wireless truck, but without an aerial, and it had a canvas hood which was lower than the top of the driver's cabin. On the nearside front mudguard the figure 43 was painted in white on a red and blue square and on the offside front mudguard were the letters JP in blue, on a red circle. In the right hand top corner of the radiator mesh was a Remembrance Day poppy, and there was a figure 5 on the offside front lamp."

    I'm glad to say all this information helped police to nail the perpetrator of a very nasty crime. But the difference in the kinds of information males and females focus on, notice, and record is striking. The girls noticed the man, his age, appearance and so on. The boys noticed the truck, right down to what was painted on it. Information of that kind I don't doubt they'd been noting and storing away for years--information about "things" in the physical world--while the girls had been noting and storing away information about people in the social world, what they were doing and so on.

    Given this instinctive difference in focus, it's not surprising that women would register and store away all kinds of information about people in the social world, and their subconscious minds would process this and bring it to bear on all kinds of questions related to people. So women come up with all kinds of "magical" insights into people, based on what they've observed and thought about, even though much of this thinking process has sunk below the level of consciousness and operates "automatically," without their awareness. Realizations just "pop into the mind." Other examples of intuition, for women in particular, may be found in Gavin de Becker's well known book, The Gift of Fear.

    Of course, thinking in one sphere or another is by no means exclusive to one sex or the other. These are just tendencies, that's all. So anyone born male like Fiona may be just as capable of picking up clues indicating that a female co-worker is pregnant--more so if Fiona has certain "feminine" mental tendencies that incline her especially toward observation and processing of information about people in the social world.

    Yet the same applies in the physical world more typical of males, and there is no better illustration of the nature of "intuition" than one I found in the memoirs of Admiral Sandy Woodward, One Hundred Days. Woodward commanded the naval forces that booted the invaders out of the Falklands during the war of 1982, but his book also described his apprenticeship as a naval officer learning to navigate submarines--a far harder task than it would appear. He served this apprenticeship under a brilliantly talented man whose name I've regrettably forgotten, since I can't lay my hand on my copy of the book right now. This mentor of Woodward's had all kinds of mental skills that Woodward despaired of ever being able to emulate, such as knowing precisely when one minute had elapsed without ever counting the seconds.

    The crowning experience came one day during a naval exercise when Woodward and his mentor were in a submarine while battleships were deploying above their heads. The ships were sailing away into the distance, six miles away (if I remember correctly), when suddenly the man said: "They've turned!" They were coming back toward us.

    Now how on earth could he know that? About these ships, six miles away? He was right, nevertheless. But Woodward was baffled by it. How could this man know what he knew? As Woodward put it: "How could I learn from a magician in a blue suit?" (The "blue suit" of course referred to his mentor's naval uniform.) But his mentor couldn't tell him either. He knew what he knew, but he couldn't tell Woodward how or why he knew it.

    Well, they figured it out in the end. There was a loudspeaker on the submarine that was monitoring through the water the distant sound of those battleships' engines. And when they turned, sailing "toward" instead of "away," the Doppler effect made the pitch of their engines rise. It was only "background noise," but Woodward's mentor had subconsciously registered this and "knew what it meant" from past experience of similar exercises.

    That's how "intuition" works. It's not "magic," even if it seems that way. But it is a priceless gift of the mind. If anyone like me is an unashamed romantic, we can enjoy seeing it as "magic" if we like! Take care!

  13. #13
    Member MonicaPVD's Avatar
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    Female intuition is paying your daughter's college debt every month for a decade.

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