People often feel vulnerable examining and expressing their emotions. Getting over these blocks allows you to live from your heart and experience more joy in your everyday life and relationships. (Estimated reading time: 5 minutes)
“Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray.”— Rumi
We’re all born into this world with the instinctive ability to know what is right to us. Whether you call it your inner guide or your intuition, it alludes to this deeper sense of knowing that originates from your heart space.
The sad reality is that most people today are disconnected from this part of their being due to the fast and busy lifestyle of modern day living. Jam-packed schedules make it difficult for many individuals to find time to connect deeper.
This is worsened by early childhood conditioning, which trained us to rely on our rational thought process to the exclusion of our emotional intelligence. Schools do a good job of creating a solid foundation for fundamental subjects such as mathematics, science, and languages, but fail to teach us the basic life skills necessary to cope with real-life challenges.
If we’re lucky, we had parents who modeled and taught these skills to us as children. However, based on statistical evidence, most kids today grow up in dysfunctional domestic conditions and are left to their own devices to figure things out. They are thrown into an emotional abyss where they have to grapple with making sense of their feelings.
Feelings are ambiguous and changeable, in comparison to our thoughts. This makes them a challenge to understand for anyone who is ill-equipped. It comes as no surprise that most adults stumble and fall when it comes to matters of the heart, because of this lack of knowledge and experience.
Entering the realm of the heart is like stepping into an ocean with depth and tides that we cannot predict. It may seem like a scary and complex territory, that can make us feel vulnerable and weak. That’s why many people rely on their thoughts because it seems safer and more familiar.
But as much as we try to avoid living from this deep place, we can’t escape it. We’ll constantly be faced with situations that require us to go beyond our logical mind. After many years of struggling to make sense of my feelings, I was finally able to do that at a Tony Robbins seminar I attended in my 20’s.
During the week-long seminar, Tony revealed how sacred and useful our emotions are, if we can to interpret them correctly. After the event, I used his tools to work on myself. I gradually came to see that the heart is a power-house of energy that can help us achieve wonders if we’re open to it.
Any exceptional creative piece from the fields of music, art, writing, and even technology, originate from a “labor of love”. Take Steve Jobs, for example – whenever he introduced the newest Apple products, he spoke with incredible passion and a glint in his eye. You could see how much he loved his innovations. Even after he passed on, people can still sense that love when using an Apple product.
Our relationships can also prosper if we can love a person from this fearless and heart-centered place. Loving someone with an open heart helps us develop authentic bonds, based on a sense of caring and kinship. We’re more willing to go all in and reveal our vulnerabilities to a partner.
But what if you’re one of those people who feels blocked in your heart space? What if you are afraid to “wear your heart on your sleeve”, so to speak? What if you don’t even know how to live from the heart because you’ve been cut off from your feelings for so long?
I have personally experienced the amazing benefits of living from the heart and I can assure you that it significantly outweighs the risks.
Here are some guidelines that will help you get started with the process:
1. Find an outlet to express your feelings on a regular basis: Bottling up your feelings is one of the unhealthiest things you can do and it’s essential to find a way to process them. You can do this by either speaking to a trusted friend or family member, or writing your thoughts down in a journal. Both ways can prove to be very therapeutic if you do it right.
2. Practice heart-centering meditations: If you’re more inclined to using spiritual modalities, you might resonate with open-heart meditations that help open your heart chakra . You can listen to them on YouTube, buy CDs, or join a meditation group to guide you through the process.
3. Create a playlist of songs that moves you on a deep level: Music is a potent tool that can help induce a heart-centered way of being. Choose a range of songs that help you experience a wide range of emotions. You can even dance and sing along to raise your vibration further.
4. Be more open and present in your relationships: When spending time with a loved one, be fully present with them (keep that iPhone away!). Don’t be afraid to be genuine and open. If someone hurts you and takes advantage of you, make it a point to build healthy boundaries or step away – this is a form of self-love, which is just as important.
5. Take an inventory of your life: Ask yourself if your time is well spent by doing what you really love. Are there ways that you can infuse more love and passion into the things that you put most of your time and effort into? If not, what do you need to shift to make that possible?
6. If you still feel blocked, seek professional support: Consider consulting a therapist, coach, or a spiritual healer to assist you in the healing process. Often times, our feelings can get scrambled and complicated, especially after enduring traumatic or challenging experiences, and we need the care and objectivity of a professional to walk with us, hand-in-hand, through the process.
Our hearts are like stained-glass windows. When we allow the light of the outside world to pass through it, we get to experience life in more vibrant colors, with rich textures that will surely take our breath away.
All my best on your journey,
Question for you: How do you know when you are living from your heart? How does it feel different from being stuck in your thoughts?
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