After listening to our thoughts and acknowledging our desires, we need to listen to our inner voice. Quantum physics shows us that there is a universal field of energy source to which we are all connected. We can tap into that source by listening consciously. One of my teachers emphasized the idea that "Everything is relevant, and nothing is random." Wow! Life gets pretty intense if you hold on to those thoughts constantly. I prefer to use those thoughts as tools - you don't necessarily have to believe that "everything is relevant, and nothing is random" 100% of the time for the concepts to be helpful.
Although meditation is a popular way to tune into your inner voice, I'd like to suggest a variation that I found useful - taking a conscious walk. Let me explain the exercise. Start a walk with no specific destination in mind. If possible, be out in nature rather than surrounded by man-made buildings and sidewalks – but adjust to what is available to you. Let nature draw you in a specific direction. As you walk, consider that everything is relevant and nothing is random. If that is true, what are your surroundings trying to teach you? Why is the place where you end up calling to you?
The first time I did this exercise was on a college campus, and we were surrounded by a lot of man-made buildings, but also there were some trees and grass. It was very cold, yet we courageously took our morning walk each day of the on-campus immersion program. On the first day as I started this exercise, I felt rather silly. How is nature going to lead me? What was nature trying to tell me? I tried to release my resistance and embrace the exercise. I noticed the tiny purple flowers blooming even when everything else was dying. I was drawn to the pink roses full of color against the dull backdrop of a gray autumn day. I noticed the asymmetrical evergreen trees standing at an unnatural angle. I was drawn toward the broad symmetrical tree with a few yellow and green leaves on it. It opened wide, offering protection. There was a table below the tree ready for me to sit and write. As I sat, I noticed that someone had written one word on the table M-A-R-I-A-N. I know it's not quite my name – Mary Ann - but it's remarkably close, so I took it as a sign that I was meant to be there. I spent some time at the table thinking about my life, the transitions I was going through, what I wanted, what I needed to let go of, and what nature was trying to teach me. I didn't have any life-altering revelations, but even if you – like me - don't get answers right in the moment, taking the time to observe, ponder, and consider the relevance of everything around you gives you food for thought for many hours and days to come. Give a conscious walk a try.