The two I’s. One of them is amongst the wisest guides that humans have, the other is a strong, impelling urge that drives them. There is a thin, almost invisible, line that separates the two -which most of the time, is either wiped off or ignored. It is so thin that it becomes really difficult to differentiate between them.
The first I – the impulse. What is it? When we say a person is impulsive by nature what is it that we actually mean? Impulse is when you want, desire, think of doing or saying something and you have a strong urge to act upon it without thinking about it rationally. It’s an immediate action that does not involve in any way the consent or consideration of the brain. It is a force stronger than anything else – the grip is so strong that it can be extremely difficult to not fall for it. Considering all of this, it is could very likely lead you into unwanted situations. Impulsive behavior can have consequences which one has to face, and they need not always be pleasant.However, on the other hand, an impulse can also make you do things you otherwise would never do, which at times is a blessing.
Moving on to the second I. Instinct. What does it mean?More than what it means I would like to stress more on where it comes from. It arises from a place much deeper than an impulse. A place most of us don’t know much about. Unlike an impulse, an instinct will not be a strong force. In fact, it will be a small voice which can be easily ignored and sometimes can go completely unheard. Neither does it ask for attention, nor demand to be brought into action. It is just a gentle voice of guidance, making you aware of what you already know but have forgotten. Or,in some cases it might give you an insight into the future and moreover, into yourself. It can strike for a millisecond and then never occur again. But it can help you make some life changing decisions if paid heed to.
The problem though is that it can be extremely difficult to differentiate between the I’s- as stated earlier, there is a very thin line between them. Once you realize the difference, however, it can be easy to know when it’s an impulse and when an instinct.
Most people routinely mistaken impulse for an instinct, and after being driven to act by it, realize that they have been tricked. The above impulsive action many times leads to unexpected and unpleasant consequences which makes a person wonder – how did my instincts lead me wrongly? So now one can easily conclude what exactly happened.
Sometimes I wonder why I want something so much. It’s really hard to reason out. All I know is that I want it. And I also know that whatever I want is the right thing for me. This is the time when impulse and instinct are working together. I call it the sweet spot. This is the time when your instinct guides you and an impulse gives you the courage to go ahead and get it. Sure, there is a difference between both but either of them might not have a meaning without the other. A balancing act between impulse as a driver and instinct as the guide, if mastered, could then be the key to unlocking the best version of ourselves!