by Pamela Tinkham, LCSW, C-IAYT, SEP
What does it mean to have an open heart? From early on in childhood, we build walls around our heart from disappointments and hurts from family and friends. In Eastern Philosophy, we work with the Chakras (energy centers) and Bandas (locks of energy) in our bodies. Specifically our heart chakra can be open or closed. It is the radiant color of green (not red ) and it opens when we trust that things will work out. It is closed when we are fearful. That is a very condensed version of a complicated system. TRUST and SURRENDER to the universe or a higher power will allow you to have a vibrantly, beautiful, green, open heart chakra. FEAR (False Evidence Appearing Real) will close it immediately. TRUST is the key here, and I know personally (loving to control everything) that it is easier said than done. It is our life work to SURRENDER and TRUST.
In Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) we teach “Wise Mind” as a way and a place to live in and strive for. The diagram below illustrates how this works
You are usually fluctuating between “Reasonable Mind” and “Emotional Mind”. It is only when you connect with your true self or your higher self that you can be centered and grounded enough to be in “Wise Mind”. To get to “Wise Mind” you can do some form of meditation, visualization, Yoga, Reiki, or exercise. It is the zone where you feel confident and knowing in a genuine way; not in a grandiose, egotistical way. It is a sense of feeling things in your gut and understanding your truth. Again, this is a consolidated version of a complicated topic. “Wise Mind” 101 says that when you are in a place of peace you are in “Wise Mind”. When you lead with your heart instead of your head you are in “Wise Mind”. When you trust your instincts and do not allow your negative thinking patterns to interfere, you are in “Wise Mind”. And lastly, when you are your true, authentic self, you are in “Wise Mind”. A quote from the Bhagavad Gita (Yogic text) says it perfectly: “Yoga is the practice of tolerating the consequences of being yourself”. Yoga is just one of the ways to get to “Wise Mind”. Skiing may be another way to “Wise Mind” . As long as you have a way to get there, that’s all that really matters.
To summarize, Open Heart, Wise Mind is a way to move forward in life with love, trust and faith while remaining mindful and aware. There is always a place to protect yourself and close off your heart… and you will only know this if you are in your “Wise Mind”. Does that make sense?
Please feel free to contact me with any questions you may have. I love hearing from you.
With trust and faith from my Wisest Mind and my Purest Open Heart!