What is Intuition?

In this post I explore what intuition is, including the differences between intuitive abilities and psychic abilities, because many people do not know what intuition is exactly, and how it differs from psychic abilities.

What is Intuition?

You know those moments when you get a feeling in your gut that someone is not trustworthy? Or a little insight about someone else’s life – for example, you know that your friend is going to get the job that she’s about to go to an interview for? That would be your intuition.

One intuitive insight that sticks out in my memory for some reason was a scenario at work about 18 months ago – it was when I was teaching English and French in a language school in Spain.

On Thursdays I only taught English, but that day as I was going out the door I knew I had to take my French grammar book with me. I wasn’t going to teach French that day and I rarely used my French grammar book anyway, even on the days I taught French, so it appeared to be pointless. But I heeded my intuitive voice and took it anyway.

Then in the afternoon one of my French students came in unexpectedly and wanted a photocopy from my French grammar book. Ta-da, I could produce one because I had it with me, because I knew I’d need it that day. Although I didn’t know what for.

I hesitated to include that story in this article because it’s kind of mundane. I didn’t find my life purpose through this intuitive insight or get guided towards buried treasure. It was a fairly small event and wasn’t too impactful, but it made my day and my student’s go more smoothly and that’s about it. Plus the intuitive insight made me feel provided for, and looked after. It was nice to have!

So, intuition can be little insights which help you with the little things – such as making your day go more smoothly, saving you time, energy or money here and there. But it doesn’t have to be small – larger insights can also help you with the big things of life, such as prevent you from investing a great deal in something (such as a major project) which will come to a dead end. Intuitive insight usually comes to you in the moment, as you need it, just like the example above of my French grammar book.

The Difference between Intuitive Gifts and Psychic Gifts

A key component of intuition is that it comes to you and through you, usually spontaneously. In order for that to happen, you must be open and you must notice intuition. On the other hand, when we talk about developing psychic ability, we’re talking more about you going ‘out there’ energetically to receive information from your Higher self or Spirit Guides.

For intuition, we often talk about feelings, impressions and a sense of knowing and all of these come through the intuitive ‘vehicles’ of clairsentience and claircognizance. (Claircognizance is an insight that just pops up spontaneously in your brain, perhaps unrelated to anything you were thinking about. Clairsentience can be a gut feeling, or a strong, meaningful emotion which speaks to you.)

So, as a general rule, an intuitive tends to use mostly clairsentience and claircognizance, whereas if someone calls herself a psychic, it’s more likely that she’ll use three or four intuitive vehicles – clairvoyance, clairaudience, clairsentience and claircognizance. I have also noticed that those psychics who mostly use clairvoyance and clairaudience usually refer to themselves as psychics, not as intuitives.

I believe that for most people, intuitive ability is easier to develop than psychic ability, because it comes primarily through claircognizance and clairsentience and most people are naturally claircognizant and clairsentient. On the other hand, clairvoyance and clairaudience seem to be additional ‘specialties’ that you can have as an intuitive, as fewer people are naturally clairaudient and very few people are naturally clairvoyant.

Meet Anna

Hi, I’m Anna Sayce! My purpose here on this website is to provide practical techniques and information to help empaths to understand, and fix the root of their energetic overwhelm & also to help sensitives to embrace and develop their intuitive gifts. I believe that developing our spiritual & intuitive side is very powerful and allows us to improve our own lives, and if we wish, even make the world a better place for others. Discover more >


  1. MarkC

    So developing intuition is like developing listening ability in a foreign language, while developing psychic abilities is like learning to speak?

  2. Zora

    Intuition’s always fascinated me. One event sticks out in particular – when I was at a Holocaust Memorial in January, I needed to go to the bathroom but felt something tell me not to. Less than a few minutes later my friend came out telling me the cubicles didn’t have doors for privacy, and curious, I checked. I remember feeling pretty proud of myself for hearing that bit of intuition, however strange the event was. I’ve had it occur a few other times but can’t remember anything in particular.

    But, intuition’s a nice little surprise I (usually) like to get. 🙂 It excites me whenever I run into it.

  3. David

    I think it’s great that you did include the mundane example of yours!

    The way I see it, spiritual meaning in general and intuition in this example, is something that is all around us all the time, in all the small things as well as the not so small – it’s not just in finding you life’s purpose, but as you point out, about the little things as well. And if we can’t see it in the little things, why would expect to be able to see it in the bigger?

    In that way, it’s really not about the content, but about the process and going with it, whether it be french grammar or life purposes.

    So thank you again for an example that takes it down to earth!

  4. Anna

    Hi David – Thanks for commenting & pointing that out! Intuition and spiritual guidance IS kind of mundane in that it’s there in the little things as much as the big things…you’ve anticipated what I’m going to say in my next post… 🙂

  5. Lenni


    since my grandad died in March, i have not been able to see auras and feel a little bit cut off, i have heard of it being because of grief. Can you tell me how to get it back?


  6. Therapy counseling

    I use to be skeptical about psychic readings until I went to a psychic myself. For all those who are still skeptical, I would recommend to give it a try once.

  7. Anna

    Hi Lenni – I think that an event like that can really affect you on many levels. Grief can lower your vibration which makes it harder to connect with Spirit. It’s a natural thing, as you recover emotionally you’ll find that you regain your psychic awareness.

  8. Allan Curren

    Just had to take the two seconds to post a thank you. Read through through your webpage and really liked the articles, bookmarked and I plan on coming back soon!

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