by Helene Verdile
Choosing to live the majority of our life outside of our head, in our body and heart, is open-hearted living. This is possible when we live deep in our hearts and soul, accessing the peace that exists there. In our head, where our ego resides, we believe everything single thought. However, not all of our thoughts are true or kind. In our heart, we recognize we are not our thoughts, and we begin to choose only thoughts that serve our highest good, while leaving the rest behind. When we use our mind to steer our lives, we often get a false sense of self. When we live from our heart, we can access our true self and live the authentic life of our dreams.
Imagine letting go of fear, speaking our truths and honoring ourselves each day without fear, judgment or worry. Imagine being scared to take the next big leap and doing it anyway, because our goal is growth, rather than perfection. Open-hearted living is a practice. We find ourselves flowing in and out of this state. In some instances, it is easier than others to live with an open heart. In more challenging situations when we feel most vulnerable, we will be tempted to climb back into our heads, where fear lives. In our heart, love reigns.
In our heart, we cultivate a relationship with joy rather than fear. We can view every day with the wonder of a child, in pure appreciation. We find the courage to tell ourselves the truth instead of all the little lies that say, “I can’t,” and, “I’m not good enough.” These little lies are stories that play on repeat and simply are not true. When we live in a state of open-heartedness, even for just moments each day, we can recognize our endless possibilities and see that we are limitless. When we embrace the heart space, we can make mistakes and fall without assuming we are incapable; we recognize the lesson to be learned and get back on course.
Open-hearted living is demonstrated by those we admire: Mother Theresa, Albert Einstein, Martin Luther King Jr., and even the comedian Jim Carrey are among the brave individuals who live from a deep sense in their hearts, from their authentic selves, rather than in their heads. In our own lives, if we are brave enough to go deep, we can also find our greatest achievement and experience life flow with ease. This sense of flow is available in every area of our life, if we allow it.
An open heart allows us to let go of the need to be right, offended, angry or better than others. When we are released from negative emotions, which originate in the head, and let go of the struggle, we open to possibilities. As author Brene Brown shares in her book The Gifts of Imperfection: Your Guide to a Whole Hearted Life, open-hearted living is not a destination, “It’s like walking toward a star in the sky,” she says. On this path, we are not arriving at a destination, but rather guided in the right direction.
Open-hearted living allows us to continuously grow from our heart space, ever-expanding. All of our boundaries exist in our head. Our hearts are limitless. When we see ourselves for who we truly are and live in a way that allows others to see us for who we truly are, we begin to see others for who they are and true healing in this world can begin.
Living from the Heart Versus the Head
~Accept rather than judge.
~Find oneness rather than separateness.
~Trust rather than fear.
~Take responsibility rather than feel victimhood.
~Find gratitude rather than problems.
~Sense wonder rather than disappointment or frustration.
~Live in the moment rather than the past or future.
~Acknowledge a higher power.
~Go with the flow of life rather than resisting it.
~Connect to soul rather than seeking approval from others.
Helene Verdile is a certified life coach and partner at Inspired Life Coaching, in Burnt Hills, and co-founder of the Center for Clarity, Compassion & Contentment. Her next session of Soul Coaching begins Feb. 15, 2018. For more information and to inquire about special program pricing for Natural Awakenings readers, call 518-470-0048 or visit Center4C.com.