New years day morning 2018. I wake and stretch and my breastbone cracks, it feels as though my heartspace is literally breaking open after months of being stuck and stagnant. My awareness tumbled straight into my hearts consciousness. Happy new year. New years day, a full moon, a manifestation meditation. A day of letting go, opening and embracing whatever is to come. Oh yes sounds idyllic and wonderful doesn’t it? It was in fact the next instalment of a seemingly continuous process of emotional and heartfelt shift and change.
Whilst we often think of the heart as where we feel the emotions, if you stop and notice it is in fact the stomach or belly where we feel things like, the light energy of happiness, the churning of anxiety, the heavy sensation of sadness. The heart, I suggest, is where we feel our intuition, where we know our true consciousness, its where our ‘soul’ resides, where we can experience knowing without over analysing or thinking. This works together with the gut where we feel if what we are doing or saying is really coming from the heart or from the thinking mind. The space of focus for this heartfelt desire energy is beneath the centre of the breastbone.
On new years eve I had been strangely emotional, although alone and in a peaceful, beautiful location by the ocean, watching the stormy waves under the moonlight, reflecting on what had gone before and wondering what may be still to come. I found myself overwhelmed by trepidation and fear. That day was very peaceful. Yoga and meditation, walking and reflection, followed by a drive back to my home in Devon on new years day.
Life has a way of pulling you out of a sense of the secure, the sense that you are in control, of shaking things up, just when you may think all is calm and peaceful. Upon my arrival home on new years day I found that some of my Yoga possessions had been packed in my absence to clear space, and so I needed to take these things away. I took this very personally, these ‘things’ are very precious to me, ritualistic treasures, and I truly felt as though my Yoga, about all I have in this life, was being attacked in some way. I can see that this was not the intention but, in my emotive state this was my initial reaction. I felt unstable emotionally and very alone. I questioned within myself what was happening and why.
The following day as I reflected, it became clear that I needed to find a physical place for all of these things, which I did. I began to question what this Yoga practice is all about, why do we become so attached to it, and to these ritualistic objects, when the goal is in fact non-attachment. I observed the emotional mind focused thought patterns and thinking reaction but also the need to listen to and respond with heart felt wisdom rather than the crazy imaginings of the mind. What was it that my newly broken open heart was saying?
I understood that, above all else, I needed and continue to need to be true to myself. I need to share the teachings that I am gathering as I progress on life journey. I need to be honest about my own experiences so that I can share these and also share the practices that have helped me with other people, so that hopefully they too can find solace and know that they are not alone. Historically I have been a very private person and so to be open and so forthrightly honest about how I feel and how I manage emotionally is very new for many people to see.
I have discovered that when I listen to the wisdom of my heart I feel at home whatever is happening and wherever I am. My belly gives me the information on how I am emotionally and it is much more stable, less anxious and I am more sure footed in the world.
I have been judged. I am expressing myself from my heart and sometimes I have found that this is uncomfortable for some people. I have been accused of being “emotionally unstable” (show me someone who isn’t?), I have been asked to remove “offensive words” from a blog post (the F word, totally in context I believe in expressing how I was experiencing feeling anxious at that time) and of “associating with the wrong people” (there is no-one new in my life whatsoever). As a result I began to question myself, to overthink (not listening to the heart) and to become even more anxious, which only served to make me even more “emotionally unstable” than before!
Why do we (generalising here, I am sure not everyone is like this) expect people to be even in temperament, to not express how they are feeling? Why are we programmed to ask ‘how are you?’ and to then answer ‘fine thanks’, when its very likely not true? Why can we not fully express ourselves from our heart and learn to accept and even better respect others who do the same? Why do we judge when people are open, honest and forthright about their emotions and life experiences? Judgement blocks the heart, it blocks the emotion of love because we are stuck in the thinking mind and do not feel our emotions. We are judgemental emotional control freaks!
I implore you, listen to the wisdom of your heart. Sit for a few moments every morning and focus on the physical space beneath the centre of the breastbone and breathe. Place the palm of your hand there and feel it. Listen to what your heart desires, feel how you feel, all of the time. Take extra special care of yourself first and foremost. Then act accordingly, you may find that you begin to make very different life choices, for you will only feel able to interact with compassionate people, you will avoid those who vex you, you will feel more drawn to do the things you love, not what you feel obliged to do, and, after the initial backlash from those who don’t understand, you will begin to feel happier, healthier and more complete. Warning, its not an easy journey but it is so very worthwhile.