Is it psychic? Or just experience?

Intuition/psychic ability and experience form a spectrum of knowledge, and it’s not always possible to tell where one begins and the other ends. Here’s what I mean:

There’s an old story about a factory owner, whose very complicated, very expensive piece of machinery stopped working. This machine was essential to his manufacturing, so he couldn’t let it stay idle for long. So he called a crusty, old repairman,  who arrived with his ancient tool kit. He looked at the machine for a few minutes, opened his kit, took out a wrench, and tapped a pipe 3 times. Then he presented the factory owner with a bill for $1000.

The factory owner was furious. He said to the repairman, “You’ve only been here 5 minutes. All you did is tap 3 times on a pipe. How can that cost $1000? I want an itemized bill.”

The repairman wrote out a new bill, which looked like this:

  • Tapping on pipe                       $  15
  • Knowing where to tap              $985

The joke obviously revolves around the value of experience.

At the extreme other end of the spectrum, there is knowledge that can only be gained psychically. For example, 25 years ago, when I was first starting to do psychic readings, I volunteered to do readings for a small women’s group, to whom I’d been referred by a mutual acquaintance. I eventually became friends with a couple of the women. Last year, one of them told me that she knew right away that I was for real because I told her something she’d done that she had done by herself, and never told anyone. So clearly that was psychic info.

Sometimes it’s not so clear. Last November, another acquaintance approached me about joining a network marketing group he had joined, saying that in 5 months, he was already making a ton of money on his tiny investment. The company was Zeek Rewards, in which he bought penny auction bids and gave them away via an automated process arranged by the company. He said he was making “1.4% average a day or 42% a month and it compounds” in just a few minutes a day. This man has proven himself trustworthy over the years, so I believed him.

But I’m not into network marketing (some of the products don’t work, all are overpriced, and even if the products work, the commission set up has to be good enough to make money.) I have never made money on any network marketing. It’s fine for other people, just not for me. I ignored his email.

I ran into him in early July, and he extolled the virtues of this particular network marketing company, telling me I was missing out on a good thing, taht he was still making money, exactly as he’d told me. Something in me said, “Ponzi scheme”. Not only did I not go for it, I told him to take his money out ASAP, before he couldn’t get it out at all. Honestly, I can’t tell you if it was a feeling (clairsentience) or a voice in my head (clairaudience or telepathy).

Here’s the funny thing: I was right.

So was it psychic knowledge? Or was it just that I’ve been around businesses for a long time, and I know a scam when I hear one? I honestly don’t know — and that’s the point. Experience and psychic knowledge go hand in hand — and maybe that combination is what people call ‘intuition’.

What Do You Know? And How Do You Know it?

Friday night, my husband, Kosta, and I were in San Francisco. We were hungry, and stopped in to a funky little place with a diner-ish menu. As we sat down in our booth, there were 4 or 5 people in the booth next to us, who seemed to be finishing up their meal. I didn’t pay much attention to them, but noticed they were of both genders, probably in their 20s.After they left, the 50-ish waiter covering both our booths (actually, the whole restaurant, as business was slow), started kvetching (complaining, for you non-Yiddish speakers, but it also has the connotation of whining, and doing it persistently) about the people who’d just left, “Those are the worst customers I’ve ever had… probably raised by wolves. They just don’t know how to act.” And on.. and on…

When I asked what they’d done to earn that stream of bitching, he said that they’d asked him to justify the price of each menu item, asked for everything done in a slightly different way than on the menu, then complained about being charged for substitutions, and decided at the end of the meal that they wanted separate checks. Having been a waitress one summer in college, I completely sympathize with his estimation of these customers.

By this point, I’d detected a slight New York accent. I didn’t want to ‘lead the witness’, but slipped into his phraseology, and asked, “Where ya from?” with a smile.

“Queens, and proud of it!”, he answered. Then he began to kvetch about San Franciscans, in general, “No one will tell you like it is, everyone just tells you what you want to hear.” And on… and on… He mentioned that all his friends still lived in Queens, that he was the only one who’d left.

“Why don’t you just move back?”, I asked, still smiling.

“I’m gonna be buried there!”, he answered defiantly — but he was smiling, too., as he left to put in our orders.

At this point, I just knew that he’d moved to SF 30 years ago because he was gay, and and said as much to Kosta. He was surprised, and asked me me how I knew the waiter’s story.

This was a complete shock — I just assumed everyone would have known that — that he knew that — because it was so obvious to me. We agreed to ask the waiter how long he’d been in SF, his sexual orientation seeming a bit too personal to ask a complete stranger.

Sure enough — he’d been in SF for 25 years. Okay, I was off by 5 years — but then I could have been off by a few years in his age, too.

Kosta tried to pass it off as, “my wife, the psychic lady”. But to me, being psychic is doing readings. And readings are something I do in an hypnotic state, where I’m really focused on the other person, with my guides around me, showing me pictures and talking to me, giving me information I couldn’t possibly know any other way, especially since I rarely even meet, or see photos of, the people I read.

So I really had to think about how I knew that he’d been in SF for so long. When I backed into the logic of it, it went like this:

The waiter clearly loved NY and had friends and family there, clearly thought it was a great place. He’d been in SF long enough to complain about the differences between the two cities. 30 years ago, when he’d been around 20, NY was even bigger and more powerful in relation to SF than it is today; you could get pretty much anything there. The only reason you’d leave NY to come to SF was lifestyle — and SF being the gay mecca of the world would probably explain it.

Absolutely none of these thoughts was conscious. It’s just normal for me to infer things — and they often turn out to be right. I don’t think of this as psychic/intuitive; it’s just what I’ve always done. It’s what used to piss people off about me as a kid, because I did it, and knew stuff, and didn’t know not to say it. I still don’t know if they were angry because I knew things I wasn’t supposed to know — and was right, or because I said these things — and lots of them were, I guess, embarrassing to the adults. Anyway, what I learned was to shut up, and only to use the information when I needed it for my own protection.

The dirty little secret here is that my Dad used to do this stuff, too. I spent a lot of time with him as a child, and he’d look at complete strangers and tell me about them. He did it with a medical eye, like seeing the telltale signs of alcoholism — but I suspect he knew a lot more than he could have gotten just that way. Of course, he never admitted that he was in any way psychic.

I learned how to do it, at least the more everyday parts of being psychic, as a skill, by copying my parent, like all kids do. (Thanks, Dad!)

So this intuition is just a skill, like any other, that everyone can do — they just maybe haven’t been taught how. We all pick up little clues about each other, about the world, that we don’t have the bandwidth to process with our conscious minds. (This is what Malcolm Gladwell was talking about in Blink.) We combine that with what we already know about the world to form an even more complete picture of the world.

So if you didn’t have a parent who modeled intuition for you, how do you learn?  

  • You wonder about things, or people, create a hypothesis — and check it out (like we asked the waiter)
  • You let yourself imagine how something, or someone, might have gotten to be the way that it is — and check it out.

And sooner or later, you’ll find yourself just knowing that your waiter moved to San Francisco a couple of decades ago.

Hollis Polk is a personal coach (, who has been helping people create lives they love for 15 years, using neurolinguistic & hypnotherapy techniques, decision science, clairvoyance & the common sense learned in 20+ years of business. She is an NLP Master Practitioner, hypnotherapist & has a BSE in engineering from Princeton & a Harvard MBA. She is also a successful real estate broker, investor & business owner.

The Value of a Vacation

  • VACATION:  a period spent away from home or business in travel or recreation (had a restful vacation at the beach)

I spent the last 2 1/2 days at the West Coast Dowsers’ Conference, where I was a speaker and led a meditation — but that was only 1 1/2 hours out of the whole weekend. That meant that the rest of the time was a vacation.

The Dowsers’ Conference is a tiny conference, just a little over 200 people, and of those, about 50 are speakers and another 15 or so are volunteers. What’s great about this, though, is the generosity of the community — everyone is open to their psychic abilities, and most are already using them in one way or another. Because of that openness, the synchronicities are amazing! Each person seems to meet the right person to help in just the way she or he needs at the moment. Sometimes that’s in a class, and it’s often in line at the cafeteria, or walking back and forth between buildings.

I am no exception. There are 4 class periods a day, and 5 speakers in each of them. So you have to choose which class to attend in each time slot. This being a dowsers’ conference, I decided to choose each class using the ideomotor finger response (a standard hypnotic technique for communication with your unconscious mind, repurposed for  dowsing). The first class I attended was from a chi gung master and channel, Ellie, who I consider a friend, despite the fact that we’ve only met twice (and this weekend was one of the two times), and that we’ve only talked on the phone about a dozen times several years ago.

What a revelation! It turns out that Ellie and I have been getting the same information for the last few years, but hearing her talk about it, all in one place and at one time, made it completely new for me! I realized whom I need to forgive to move my business forward (and I’ve already done that), and that it is no longer appropriate for me to make decisions for my business based on what one is ‘supposed’ to do to market a service. All my own business guidance must now come from my guides. Duh! And if the guidance says ‘do nothing’, as it has been saying all year, then I have to listen to that (much as it pains me). And I can draw my clients to me using the process I developed 15 years ago that brought my wonderful husband. (If you want to learn the process, please call me at 888-4-HOLLIS).

Then, I was browsing through the bookstore, and came upon a pamphlet, entitled “99 Things You Can do with Dowsing”. It included such ideas as dowsing whether a particular food, or method of food preparation is beneficial to you, or a cleaning product is beneficial for you and others in your home. Wow! So I can dowse whether or not to do different kinds of work, whether or not I should teach a class, and when it should begin, etc.

Then I was drawn to another class — this one on communicating with animals psychically. We each had to count off in 1s and 2s. I was a ‘2’, seated  between two ‘1’s. i just knew I had to work with the woman to my left, that she’d be a better partner for me. Wow, was she! She was very accurate in talking with my lovely cat, Beast, and then I communicated with a dog she is just getting to know (new boyfriend’s dog). This was really easy, and she verified pretty much everything I said. Then we did a few group readings of particular animals — again, really easy, and what I said was verified by the human asking the question.

It turned out that my class partner is, among other things, a professional animal communicator! And she asked me to help with a client’s cat, whose legs give out often and with no warning, and for no apparent reason. I saw immediately and clearly that the cat had been a draft horse in another lifetime, worked to death at a plow, when its legs gave out. She thanked me, and said that made sense, and that she could now work with the cat to heal it. Then she told me that I was a natural, and already doing animal readings on the inner planes, and that I should tell everyone that I do this. So:

I do animal readings! And they are half the price of my human ones until July 23. Please call me now at 888-4-HOLLIS (888-446-5547) if you have an animal with a behavior problem. 

When I asked her why she’d come to this class, she said she thought there was a missing piece for her in the class. It turned out that I was the person who had the missing piece for her!

So my vacation resulted in re-creation — a new attitude to my work, and new work! Pretty cool for a 2 day vacation, huh?

PLEASE NOTE: a ‘staycation’ is, by definition, not a vacation.

Hollis Polk is a personal coach (, who has been helping people create lives they love for 15 years, using neurolinguistic & hypnotherapy techniques, decision science, clairvoyance & the common sense learned in 20+ years of business. She is an NLP Master Practitioner, hypnotherapist & has a BSE in engineering from Princeton & a Harvard MBA. She is also a successful real estate broker, investor & business owner.

Join me at the Dowsers’ Conference!

I’ll be teaching people how to look into the future for themselves this July 7 – 9 at the West Coast Dowsers’ Conference. Come play with me! :)I always love participating in the Dowsers’ Conferences, because they feel like home, a real community of psychics, or at least people who are open to psychic information. There are a million ways to get that info – some of which involve the use of a pendulum, called dowsing. (Since I don’t use a pendulum, I didn’t think of myself as a dowser, till it was explained to me that they’re open to all modes of getting info.)

Plus I always learn something — and that’s a real draw for me. Last time, I bent a spoon, which is ridiculously easy. So did pretty much everyone else in the room! And I was part of a group where we took turns lifting each other. 4 of us repeatedly lifted a 5th person with just our joined forefingers! And one of those guys was HUGE. Obviously, psychokinesis is real.

Come play with all of us! Hope you can make it!

Hollis Polk is a personal coach (, who has been helping people create lives they love for 15 years, using neurolinguistic & hypnotherapy techniques, decision science, clairvoyance & the common sense learned in 20+ years of business. She is an NLP Master Practitioner, hypnotherapist & has a BSE in engineering from Princeton & a Harvard MBA. She is also a successful real estate broker, investor & business owner.

Are you psychic? 8 ways to tell

Every time I ‘read’ a new client, I look at their ability to get information intuitively aka psychically. Lately I’ve had a few who were quite psychic, but didn’t know that, and were uncomfortable with it. All they knew was they knew or felt things that they weren’t ‘supposed’ to know. At the end of our session, one of these clients said, ‘thanks for letting me know I’m not crazy’.So I thought I’d give you the most common ways people experience their psychic abilities, when they don’t know the abilities are psychic abilities — the things that make people think they’re crazy.  Often people experience more than one, but it’s rare for someone to have ALL of them. I’m listing them in the order of the chakras with which they’re associated. For more on the chakras, go here.

  • I’m jumpy for ‘no reason’ – You might get psychic information in your first chakra, which is normally concerned with survival stuff (health, money, etc.). The problem is that when you’re getting psychic information here, this information may not be about you. So when you feel nervous or jumpy, you have to ask yourself, “Is this even about me?” If the answer is yes, deal with it yourself. If the answer is no, then sit with it, and see if the information becomes more specific. If you can’t get anything more specific, let it go and relax.
  • I can feel other people’s feelings -This is a classic example of a wide open 2nd chakra. To some degree, we are all wired for this (using mirror neurons) and it is definitely stronger in some people than in others. For many, this is a good thing. But for some people, others’ feelings hijack your own life. There are things you can do to stop this, but a written description won’t suffice.
  • I can feel the energy of a place – This is similar to feeling others’ feelings — except no mirror neurons are involved. Back when I was opening up psychically, I attended a Sunday open house of a house that was for sale, on the recommendation of my realtor. Though the house had all the features I was looking for, I was so creeped out by the feeling of the place that I literally ran out in under 2 minutes. The next day, the realtor told me that the house was owned by a fugitive who was wanted for murder.
  • I have these internal arguments – And it’s not just yes/no or should/shouldn’t. There are multiple lines of argument from different points of view. I suggest that in this case, you are probably hearing your guides’ points of view. There are things you can do to work with this, and turn it into an asset rather than an annoyance, but a written description won’t suffice. This is a throat (5th) chakra ability.
  • I can hear other people’s thoughts or or see other people’s pictures – Have you ever had a thought, and then had it immediately contradicted by another? Many years ago, my (now ex) husband went out of town on a business trip while I moved house for us. The new place was closer to the airport than the old one. When I picked him up at SFO, he said he wanted to drive, which was fine with me. As we crossed the Golden Gate Bridge, I pictured in my mind our new exit, and driving to our new home. Immediately afterwards, an image of the old exit came into my mind. I said, “No, we’ve moved, we’re getting off at the Sausalito exit.” To which he replied, “Thanks.” (I was so sure that I’d seen his picture that I never even asked him. And I was right, because he wasn’t even surprised when I corrected him.) My example is a third eye (6th chakra) one, but hearing others’ thoughts is either throat chakra or crown (7th) chakra  ability.
  • I get images of the future, places I’ve never been, people I’ve never met – Classic clairvoyance (third eye)! The problem with these is that you don’t know what the images are until later. It’s important to remember these (even keep notes), so that when they show up in real life, you’ll understand (a) that you ‘saw’ this stuff earlier and (b) learn what sorts of things/people/ places/events you tend to foresee.
  •  I ‘just know’ stuff – I ‘just know’ what someone else is thinking, or who’s on the other end of the phone when I pick it up (and no, Caller ID doesn’t count). Again, this is a crown chakra ability, which is direct mind to mind communication. When it’s with a living human, it’s called telepathy. When it’s with a discarnate being, it’s called channeling.
  • I have precognitive dreams –  This is often astral travel, which is sending your consciousness to other places and/or times. Sometimes (though this will feel completely different, and is not technically a dream), it’s actually leaving your body to go to another point in space/time.

If you do any of these things, and want to learn more about your abilities and/or practice them in a safe setting, please send me an email. I’m thinking of doing my teleseminar series again, beginning in August. It will be twice a month, for about 1 1/4 hours/class, at 5:30PM PT. I am taking votes on whether Tuesdays or Thursdays are preferable. Please let me know which day you prefer.

Hollis Polk is a personal coach (, who has been helping people create lives they love for 15 years, using neurolinguistic & hypnotherapy techniques, decision science, clairvoyance & the common sense learned in 20+ years of business. She is an NLP Master Practitioner, hypnotherapist & has a BSE in engineering from Princeton & a Harvard MBA. She is also a successful real estate broker, investor & business owner.