Virginia Mason Richardson is a Brooklyn-based healer, psychic, and coach who helps clients all over the world tune into their own magic.
She wiped the tears from her eyes and asked me one simple question: “How do I know if what I saw is intuition or if I just imagined things?”
I had just taken her on a journey to meet her spirit guides. She met an old and wise vulture and a tall, beautiful elf. She saw them clearly in her mind. She heard them and felt them, but she didn’t trust that they were real. And as someone who specializes in helping people awaken and understand their intuition, her question is the one question I am asked over and over again: is it real or am I just imagining it?
So let me break it down for you. In all of life, there is reality, imagination, and divine wisdom. Reality is what is true and what you confront with all your being and your senses in every moment of every day. Imagination is a mental process that creates many stories in your mind. Sometimes you are aware that you’re just imagining something and that your mind is making it up, but often, you aren’t.
Imagination actually accounts for a huge percentage of your experience. That’s because reality has this nasty habit of breaking down in the mind. It easily gets overrun by all sorts of extraneous interpretation and false beliefs. But there is the truth. And every so often, we are lucky enough to confront it directly, to eliminate enough of our imagined world that we face reality head-on.
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When this happens, we experience the world with little to no processing in the mind, and what we are left with is simply the truth. This truth is just the way things are, and this is divine wisdom. But you can’t access divine wisdom without embracing your imagination.
There is real, unmeasurable stuff in your environment that you are processing and picking up on all the time. You know how sometimes when you walk into a room, you can feel that something is off? You can’t pinpoint the single, specific thing that’s telling you what’s off, and since you can’t pinpoint it, you can’t measure it. But you know the gut feeling, and the information is real. You intuit it.
Your intuition is your superpower. It’s the way in which you process all of the unmeasurable information. And if you want to strengthen it, you have to get to know your imagination.
You have to let it run wild. You have to create so much space in your mind, and in your imagination, that there is room for every possible piece of unmeasurable information to make itself known to you. As you do this, your mind may make up some things, but other things you experience will be real. As you open the door to your imagination, you may start in a daydream but in the end, you may find yourself in a vision.
But to really know the difference between your imagination and your intuition, you have to be brave enough to start acting on your intuition and expressing it out loud. This is how you learn what’s really going on. This is how you can receive confirmation that something is the result of divine wisdom and not just your imagination. Courageously expressing your intuition is the only way you can truly grow to understand and trust it.
I first started trusting my intuition because when I closed my eyes to meditate or dream, I saw things or thought things that were almost immediately proven to be true. But back then, I couldn’t control these premonitions, and I wasn’t even confident calling them that. I hadn’t established any real trust between myself and the universe. But trust grew as I continued to test my intuition.
When I started giving people Reiki, I experienced a flood of visions. I worried that it was all just my imagination, so for awhile, I kept my mouth shut and didn’t share what I saw. But it wasn’t long before curiosity took over, and I began sharing these messages.
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Through this, I learned that I didn’t imagine things. I was processing real information. Information that was far too precise to be imagined. Like the time a man came into my office. He was worried about money, and as I gave him Reiki, I heard his mom (who had already passed away) say she didn’t understand why he was stressed. She told me she’d given him plenty, and she showed me something metal and circular that was tucked in the back of a file cabinet. I shared all of this with him, and he responded: “Oh, the watch! It’s just sitting in the back of my filing cabinet!”
So if you want to know whether you’re imagining something or intuiting it, be courageous. Express yourself, and trust that if it’s real, the universe will find a way to confirm it for you. And once it’s confirmed enough times over and over again, then you will stop questioning yourself and start trusting in your ability.
Virginia is a Brooklyn-based Reiki Master and psychic healer dedicated to expanding people’s understanding of what’s possible. She offers private readings, coaching, healing, and more through her company, Fleeting Connections. Follow her @fleetingconnections on IG!
Photo by Sam Manns on Unsplash