We humans are a curious bunch. Our brains and bodies are neurologically and biologically wired for connection. We need it, we want it, and we can’t live – like, really live – without it.
We’re hungry for it.
At the center of this hunger is the heart. So intrinsic to our ethos, we have nearly countless idioms to describe the human condition: we have open hearts, kind hearts, cold hearts, broken hearts. We are wholehearted, heartless, young at heart, heartsick. We take heart, we have heart, we wear our hearts on our sleeves.
So why does love and connection feel so scary sometimes? And if we’re literally hardwired to connect, why can it be so elusive and seemingly hard to come by?
And why, oh why, do we often put up barriers to the very thing we crave (and dare I say, need) the most?
Because, dear one, if you’re alive and reading this, there’s a nearly 100% chance you’ve had your heart broken. Or someone close to you has betrayed your trust. Or your birth parents either didn’t know how to, or were incapable of, holding you as an infant.
Our hearts are tender and like a garden, require special care. In order to grow the bonds required for human connection, we need to build trusting relationships. And we need to learn to trust ourselves.
Many of us never learned how to create loving boundaries for ourselves. And our gardens get trampled.
Or we learned the hard way that we need to armor up, and keep our defenses activated to keep ourselves safe. 24/7 lock down.
Getting in touch with your heart, listening to its wisdom, and learning to trust yourself with your garden, these are the ways through.
I wish I could say it’s as easy as that, but you’re right, this is hard work. Because we’ve not yet been taught the ways of the heart, how to listen, how to mend the break.
Your heart is quite wise, however, and is a center for neuronal activity. With 40,000 sensors that can feel, remember, and even learn, you could say that your heart has a mind of its own. These neurons are not simply receiving top-down instruction from the brain; they actually send their own messages.
And these messages are not only destined for your own brain and body. Electro magnetic heart frequencies can be measured 10 feet from your core.
Your heart can shine bright like a beacon. Or pull your desires to you like a magnet. Conversely, signals from your heart can warn others to stay away.
The heart can drive a human to do crazy diabolical things or crazy beautiful things. It can be our Achilles heel, or our guiding light. Our heart can be our greatest point of pain, or drive our highest calling to purpose.
So I ask, what are you are hungry for?
Are you craving connection? More opportunity? Wanting to grow your business? Or to know yourself better?
Get quiet. Breathe deeply, settle the body, and plant your feet on the floor. Pay attention to your heart and practice breathing into your heart center. Fill your heart center with a feeling of calm.
Then ask your heart if it has a message for you. It may not come at first, because we don’t always listen well. Keep asking, and in the space between thoughts, between breaths, ask for guidance.
If you struggle with heartache, fear, or doubt, ask the heart what it needs to feel safe. (Then act on it!)
If you’re pushing away that which you crave the most, ask what you can do to change the polarity of your magnet.
Ask for the wisdom to tend your garden, to grow and blossom, to satisfy at last the hunger of the heart.
P.S. If you love the Boss, you’ll find the most exquisite poetry in “Springsteen on Broadway” (Netflix).