Explainer: what is intuition? - Deepstash
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Albert Einstein

“Intuition is nothing but the outcome of earlier intellectual experience.”

ALBERT EINSTEIN

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Defining intuition

Defining intuition

The word intuition is derived from the Latin intueor – to see; intuition is thus often invoked to explain how the mind can “see” answers to problems or decisions in the absence of explicit reasoning – a “gut reaction”.

But intuition need not refer to some magical process by which answers pop into our minds from thin air or from deep within the unconscious. On the contrary: intuitive decisions are often a product of previous intense

e and/or extensive explicit thinking.

Such decisions may appear subjectively fast and effortless because they are made on the basis of recognition.

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Using intuition adaptively

Whether or not intuition is inherently “good” really depends on the situation. We need to exercise caution and attempt to use intuition adaptively.

  • When we are in situations we have experienced lots of times (such as making judgments about the weather), intuition - or rapid recognition of relevant “cues” – can be a good guide.
  • But if we find ourselves in novel territory or in situations in which valid cues are hard to come by (such as stock market predictions), relying on our “gut” may not be wise.
  • Our inherent tendency to get away with the minimum amount of thinking could lead to slip-ups in our reasoning.

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