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The dictionary definition of vibes is 'the atmosphere, feeling, or ambience that somebody senses from a person or thing.' Haven't you heard many people exclaim Oh! She is giving me such a negative feel or conversely I really like her, there's something about her that makes me feel drawn towards her. If you notice in both instances, a person is describing vibes. A gut feeling of sorts, an intuition if you'd like to call it that. In fact, some would go as far as saying it's an instinct about a person or thing. I just know this isn't right for me or My sixth sense tells me that I should take up this position.

But do these gut feelings, vibes; perceptions and insights have any basis? Or are they merely unexplainable phenomena that people resort to when they don't want to use their heads and may want to explain away decisions they may have taken or things that they may have done? Do these gut feels have no basis in fact and are they really as unscientific as they may appear to be? All filled with prejudice, with a leaning towards what could be safely called a bias. In fact, isn't that exactly what happens in interpersonal relations and even between countries, where strong preconceived notions don't allow members of one caste to have confidence in another or even permit household members to trust each other.

As a therapist and an expert in the field of mental health, how do I view this concept of vibe? Do I give it any significance and would I listen to my own gut? Yes, I believe I would. Because man lives life with two faculties - an inherent intelligence and the experience of his past. And when the two come together in a synthesis of sorts, we could explain that phenomenon as a vibe or an instinct. A déjà vu feeling often drives me to make choices, accept or reject certain people, agree or disagree to do some kind of work. Sure, the logically minded people would define that I have preconceptions that have made me make foregone conclusions and that I ought to rethink my position or decision, and give it it's significant due!

Putting it simply, vibes between people exist. And going by them often may lead you to be more discerning. The problem however appears when all interactions are based on the 'vibe', on the gut. Where no second chances are given. Where we literally judge a book by its cover. Where we don't give benefit of the doubt and instead settle to accept that our gut was right! Preconceptions can be damaging because foregone conclusions are already made. And to that extent going by your vibe can be detrimental and self-defeating.

Moral of the story? Sure, listen to your sixth sense but with it add data. Look for evidence to make your conclusions. Check if you are hastily drawing inferences without basis in fact. Your assumptions are often that - assumptions. Hypothesis without being tested are akin to superstitions. They are fallacies, often misleading and deceptive.

So if we want to improve our interpersonal connects lets do ourselves a favor - give your gut a chance to be experienced. Let your vibe come to the fore. But support it with truths. Give the man a rope and see if he hangs himself by behaving in manners that second your gut. Then you can rest in peace knowing that your 'vibe' rang true!

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