From the moment we arrive in this world, we are aware of what all our senses tell us about our surroundings. When our mother’s arms embrace us and we feel warmth and a caring heart, we begin to feel peace, comfort and love in our new world.
What we are doing is learning, quite naturally, to allow ourselves to be more heart vulnerable. Now, heart vulnerability is not a process that produces what you may commonly associate with vulnerability – being open to hurt, injury or attack.
Neither is heart vulnerability being sentimental or mushy or trying to “do good” and letting others walk on you, or allowing another’s feelings to pull you down. Being heart vulnerable is staying solidly centered in your heart while you feel what’s really going on and listen to your common-sense heart intelligence.
Many people believe that while we are children, and even as adults, we retain the memory of that initial security we felt in the arms of a parent. Most of us know too that the trials and tribulations of life can make this a distant memory. When we start school or strike out on our own, it is natural to become more cautious in strange surroundings with new people and stimuli. When, however, we suffer heartbreak in love, lose a dear relative or friend or experience any of life’s pressing challenges, a great number of us instinctively insulate ourselves from the world. If we haven’t received external support, as we did in infancy, we frequently go to great lengths to protect ourselves: We may shut out our feelings, avoid relationships or grow bitter and angry.
“Often people avoid feelings because they’re afraid of becoming vulnerable, getting pulled into an emotional sinkhole they won’t easily get out of,” Childre and Rozman say in Transforming Anger. “Feelings have to be addressed, or they’ll hold back progress in many areas of your life. Being heart vulnerable allows you to notice your feelings as they move through you, hopefully, before they cascade into anger or rage.”
“Rather than becoming less vulnerable when we experience hurt and emotional pain in life, allowing ourselves to be vulnerable in our hearts is precisely the antidote we need, advises The Hidden Power of the Heart, by Sara Paddison. (She is now Sara Childre.) Being vulnerable doesn’t have to be threatening. Just have the courage to be sincere, open and honest. This opens the door to deeper communication all around. It creates self-empowerment and the kind of connections with others we all want in life.
When you were that infant, it was not your brain’s memory that told you it was good to be held and touched and cared for. So how did you know these things? Just as you know in your heart how good it feels to be happy, how wonderful warm sand on a beach feels between your toes, or how deeply you feel when you are in love, your heart was telling you as an infant that you were cared for. True, as you grow older your brain can think such things through, but it is the intelligent and intuitive heart that feels them on a deeper level.
Having the courage to allow yourself to be heart vulnerable personally and with others could prove to be one of the sweetest and most healing medicines you ever take. This is especially true if you’ve been hurting for some time and have retreated from the joys of life.
HeartMath has developed many tools that can help you become more attuned to your heart – to listen to and acknowledge what it is you are feeling and with the respond appropriately. One tool that has been used successfully by hundreds of thousands of people around the world is the Notice and Ease® Tool. Click the link and try it. Start identifying and neutralizing unwanted emotions. Notice and Ease can teach you to release those emotions by actually befriending them and then stopping their energy drain. Your heart can then open to accept the positive emotions that create and maintain resilience, and provide comfort and security whenever you allow yourself to be heart vulnerable.