‘Heart’ is a bit of a buzzword at the moment. Everyone is supposed to ‘come from the heart’, ‘tune in to what your heart is telling you’, ‘open your heart chakra’ or ‘live a heart centred life’. I’ve been told some iteration of the above by various people over the last few years, to which I looked back at them through glazed eyes, nodding furiously and pretending I knew what the hell they were talking about. I mean, how exactly do you do that? What does it feel like? How is that different to what I do now? Where is the specific step by step ‘how to tap into your heart’ program or GPS directions for that matter. Following these recommendations you are generally just left to your own devices, to flail around and wonder – how the hell do you get in to this heart business?
I originally thought my gut feel, might be what my heart wanted. I noticed however, that this generally got me into impromptu adventures. Which more often than not, resulted in hangovers, or hangovers + waking up next to what was definitely only a good idea the night before. In hindsight, this was probably more a form of impulsiveness, than gut feel or my hearts desire.
I spent a lot of time thinking about how I might connect with my heart. Which was another red herring, as the mind is one of the biggest reasons you may not be in touch with your heart. Where you put your attention, your energy goes. So it makes logical sense really based on simple geography of the anatomy. When you spend all day wrapped up in your head planning, worrying, overanalysing, trying to control life or reliving your behaviour from that balls-up at work or last nights misdemeanours, it’s impossible to be in the heart.
In a similar vein, I was confused and unclear about what I really wanted in this life, who I was meant to be and how I could find my purpose. I barely knew what I wanted for breakfast, let alone how to navigate my life or how to tap into the intelligence of my heart. This decoy also took me further away from my heart still. Instead of going inwards to figure it out, asking myself the questions and being open to receive the answers I found myself in an endless cycle of stress and confusion which led to paralysation, fed by this erratic circuitous energy.
When I first did the heart breath meditation, from the Institute of Heart Maths I had my very first visceral experience of actually feeling my true heart energy. And it was so, so different from the feeling of my noodley mind. Apparently because the energy of the heart is 5000 times stronger than the energy of the brain-mind. It took all of a few minutes with some hand on heart deep breathing and focus to feel my energy descend down into the centre of my chest and then in to the earth for a beautifully calm, serene and emotionally balanced feeling to come over me. The quick meditation takes all of 5 minutes and can be done at any time of the day. It’s a brilliant emotional reset.
Other ways to get back in to your heart are via self love. Cut yourself a break. Accept your emotions and let yourself feel them, but then let them flow through you, rather than getting attached to them. Practice your version of self care, whether it’s taking time to connect within yourself, caring for your body or doing things that are joyful and loving for you every day. Practise compassion, respect and peace towards yourself, and others.
The more you consciously practise, the more connected you will feel and before you know it, you will automatically operate from the heart. The more time we spend in our heart, the better we feel. From my experience anyway!
Even the simple act of placing your hand in the centre of your chest and taking your attention there, connects you to your heart. So tune in, play around with it, and see what else it has to offer.
Heart Breath Meditation – From the Institute of HeartMath via Greg Villiers
Sit comfortably, eyes closed, resting palms upwards on your thighs.
Become aware of your breath, in through the nose and out through the nose. Noticing on the out-breath, you are relaxing deeper and deeper, completely surrendering and letting go.
Place one hand on the center of your chest, in the heart centre. Simply by doing this your body releases the feel good chemical Oxcytocin.
Then breathe in through the nose, and, taking slightly longer on the out-breath, breathe this energy deep down into the earth.
Do 6 cycles of this slow breathing, feeling it going deep into the earth and feeling the connection.
On the next in-breath, breathe in Ease, Love & Compassion. And then do a natural out-breath. Do 3 sets of these.
Feel how the energy has shifted from the brain-mind into the heart.
Feel the stillness and the peace.
Continue to breathe in high vibrational thoughts for a few of minutes– Peace, Love, Respect – any high vibrational words will enhance the energy of your heart field. As you feel the energy of the heart expanding, just stay in the energy. Let your hand rest back on your thigh.
Breathe in love & compassion for yourself. Breathe in love and compassion for others.