February is American Heart Month, a time we call attention to our heart health. We hear a lot about the physiology of the heart. There's been extensive research on the prevention and the treatment of heart disease over the last decade. We are also coming up on Valentine's Day, where our loved ones are honored and the bonding of our hearts is celebrated.
But there is little conversation about what I call "heart sense," the powerful source of wisdom which is housed in our hearts. Metaphorically, it's like having another brain that has its center in the largesse of our hearts. Heart sense is not dependent upon what feels right at the moment, or what emotional state we are in. On the contrary, it's rooted in knowledge that goes deep and transcends time. It has a connection to our intuition and is probably related to what has been called the subconscious mind.
Insights from our heart can help us uncover what has stopped us from moving forward in our lives, transform the way we think and feel about people, and stir up yearnings we might have buried for years -- desires that lead us to living our dreams.
How do we tap into this transformational resource? By going within and listening for an idea -- a heart thought -- bursting to come forth. For many of us, sitting still is not easy to do. What helps me is to start by taking a few deep breaths. I don't judge any inner chatter that arises, I just watch these thoughts come and go. I allow myself to go deeper and listen for the guidance that will surface.
Here are some ways to identify if we are connecting with this wisdom:
Heart sense feels grounded. Thoughts coming from the heart connect us to a greater sense of ourselves and other people. They are unchanging. By going within, we are given answers to challenges we thought had no solution.
Heart sense doesn't lie. Our rational mind is bombarded by many diverse thoughts, and they can be contradictory. How long any one thought stays in our consciousness depends on how much attention we give to it. However, our heart sense never wavers from the truth, because it comes from an inner knowing.
Heart sense comes with conviction. Some insights we receive from our heart will cause our passion to be ignited. We may experience a deep conviction to make a difference in the lives of others and to serve the greater good. Take notice when this arises.
For more by Helene Lerner, click here.
For more on emotional wellness, click here.