HJ: Living from the heart is an ability we all possess… sometimes we just need a gentle reminder to get out of our heads and reconnect with the wisdom at the core of our being. When we live and operate solely from the mind, we cut ourselves off from the infinite potential that is available when living from the heart. This is because the mind is inherently limited, logical and rational. It has a finite capacity to analyze various scenarios and therefore if we use it as our primary tool for navigating our lives, we remain closed off to the larger realm of possibilities that are within our reach when we trust with our hearts.
For example, take the analogy of chess game. How many moves ahead can you really visualize? Two, maybe three if you are a mathematical genius, but the further out you try to imagine, the more complex everything becomes quite rapidly and suddenly you lose the ability to be accurate because there are just too many variables to consider.
Life works in the same way, there are such a wide range of possibilites and influencing factors that it is too complex to try and navigate with the mind alone. You will end up limiting yourself simply because you do not have the mental ability to process that much data.
But living from the heart operates not on logic, but from the intuitional level, which does not abide by the same rules as the mind. Our heart-centered intuition allows us to tap into the vast field of potential constantly before us and extract the exact information we need to make a decision in that given moment, without needing to know and analyze all the facts. It takes trust, but you will never be led astray.
This is just one of the many reasons why heart centered living is superior to the logical, rational mind. But don’t get me wrong — the mind has its place and is necessary for many things, it simply must be balanced with the inner wisdom that originates at our core. For must of us, that is one of our greatest challenges. To leave the dominance of the mind and begin connecting more strongly to our hearts — to our true selves.
Re-connect with Your Heart and Begin Your Life
The demands of life cause most of us to live in constant mental overdrive – always thinking, analysing, organising, evaluating and planning our way through life.
In this article I would like to invite you to take a break from using your mind and to consider opening yourself to your inner heart, where your true self resides.
Re-connecting with Your Heart
Ultimately, no matter what goals people set in their lives, I believe most of us are seeking simple things in life: happiness, love, freedom. It is disheartening that most people depend on the outside world for these qualities; qualities that can already be found within us when we pursue a journey of self-discovery.
There is a common trend in our world of seeking happiness by pursuing what wethink will make us happy, instead of pursuing the feeling of happiness that already resides within the authentic self; within our hearts.
Of course, on some level we all know that material pursuits like purchasing an expensive car, dating someone successful or overindulging in food will not lead to authentic self-esteem and happiness. However, knowing this on a mind-level and pursuing your inner happiness on an experiential level are two different things.
Seeing Yourself in a New Light
I believe that all genuine spiritual teachings at some point ask us to consider the question: “who am I?"
You soon realize that there is a part of you that is not your mind. Not your body. Not your personality. This is the part where your authentic self resides.
Have you ever experienced a spontaneous awe-inspiring feeling of happiness or love that seemed to arise within from out of nowhere? If you have, where did this feeling come from? These core experiences can remind us of how true love and true happiness is not a result of external events or how we think about things. Those feelings arise out of just being who you are authentically.
In order to experience more authentic feelings, one has to live from within the heart completely, not just temporarily. This leads us to the paradox that in order to discover ourselves, we must first surrender ourselves.
It is common to find oneself faced with a fear of letting go of the predominant “thinker" within. However, when you recognise that there is a deeper part of you that is more authentic and more powerful than the thinking-self, it becomes much easier to trust in this transformative process.
How do I Start?
Call it meditation. Call it mindfulness. Call it awareness. Whatever we call it, it comes down to the decision of avoiding attachment to the stories and convictions of the mind. It is aconscious decision to turn inward and to listen to the inner heart instead, the part of us that is lacking so much that we do not even recognise its presence until we have acknowledged it.
Below are four suggestions for reconnecting with the inner heart:
1. Intuition, not analysis. Recognise that what you know on the mental level is a minuscule fragment of all that exists in the grand scope of reality. Understanding and wisdom that arises from within the heart can be even greater than that which arises from the mind.
2. Feeling, not thinking. Notice when the impulse arises to make judgements and conclusions about others. In these moments, turn inward to listen to your heart instead.
3. Trusting, not controlling. Trust the synchronicities and patterns in your life instead of attempting to micromanage every aspect.
4. Gratitude, not desire. Remember that all that arises in the material realm is impermanent. Instead of using your imagination to chase the fantasies of mind, give appreciation to your imagination for guiding you towards the creative unfolding of life.
I have made each suggestion above with the consideration that there is an imbalance in our world towards the mind. These ideas are not here to abolish the thinking and evaluation faculties of the mind, but instead to help re-balance and re-focus your energy.
Living from the heart can lead to a totally new experience of life. For some, it even feels like beginning life for the very first time as they step out of their role as the thinker and live for the first time from the heart.
A flowing stream that is restricted with stones and branches along its path tends to slow down and then stop flowing altogether. Likewise, our consciousness is in constant motion, yearning to break free from the mundane motions of life and the regulated routines that seem to repress it. When we allow our true selves to flow freely, we find this heart-consciousness touches and transforms all that it encounters.
Keys to connecting with heart consciousness include:
5. Remember Who You Really Are
You are the Divine Light of Spirit. You are unconditionally loved and worthy – always. It is only the ego that tells you that you must prove your worth or live up to other people expectations. Listen to your heart, not your ego, and remember Who you really Are, and that you are unconditionally loved and worthy! We each have gifts to share. No one is exactly like you and the world is in need of your beautiful light – celebrate your beautiful, Divine light and shine it!
6. Love You – ALL of You
Love all of your Self – each and every part. It is in accepting the best and worst of your Self that you can experience wholeness. Let go of the images you were conditioned with about what you “should" be, do, have or look like. Detach from other people’s judgments, as their judgments are about their “stuff" – their thoughts, beliefs and conditioning reflecting back at them through their judgments of others. Forgive yourself and others for your perceived grievances and errors. We all have the capability to experience any human condition or act under the right circumstances. We each travel the path our Soul has chosen to experience, and it is important to release judgments of yourself and others, as our Souls travel our beautiful Divine paths. Even if your ego doesn’t understand, your Soul does. Any part of you – whether your ego judges it as “good" or “bad" – that you reject within yourself (usually because you were taught to believe it was “good" or “bad") will be reflected back to you through your relationships and experiences. To live from your heart, your true Divine essence, embrace ALL of you.
7. Be Your Authentic Self
As you release the ego’s need to live up to the expectations of others for approval and acceptance, you give your Self permission to express Who you choose to BE. Who you choose to BE may change over time as you experience, create, learn and grow. Life is ever-changing as it flows in its Divine rhythm. Reflect on Who you were 5 years ago – are you the same person today, or have your experiences and creations shifted your experience of your Self?
8. Connect With and Share Your Gifts
Your Soul longs to serve in the world through sharing the gifts you came here to share. Gifts are not usually physical, but rather attributes or characteristics such as compassion, love, peace, joy, courage and so on. When you share your gifts with the intention of being of true service, you create true joy and fulfillment from within (not dependent on anything outside of you). No one can take this away from you for it is your true Divine essence. As you allow your Soul to reveal it’s gifts to you, you connect with the flow of life to give (share your gifts), receive the abundancethat allows you to continue giving, and as a result, create and experience deep purpose and meaning for your life (true joy and fulfillment).
9. Give/Be That Which You Desire
Your energy (thoughts, words, feelings, beliefs and actions) is like a magnet, attracting to you experiences and people that resonate with your energy. If you desire more peace in your life, but your energy is not peaceful, you are not aligned with attracting peace. One way to connect with Heart Consciousness is to give away or BE that which you desire for the purpose of SHARING, not getting/having (which is ego consciousness). If you desire love, BE love, give love to others. Being/sharing the very things you desire helps you to realize it’s been within you all along, and encourages you to share your gifts on a deeper level.
Alexander de Foe holds a Master’s degree in Counselling and has a personal background in meditation and re-connecting with the inner self. Alexander’s videos have been viewed over 500,000 times on YouTube and cover a wide range of issues from philosophy, emotional healing to meditation and expanding self-consciousness. His passion is to help others expand their spiritual and emotional awareness to live fuller, richer and more meaningful lives.