“Only thing greater than the power of the mind is the courage of the heart” ~ Anonymous
April is the month we are cultivating your “courageous heart”. In this month’s training on leaning into your courageous heart, I will incorporate some of the teachings of Brene Brown, who is thought leader in this realm.
What is courage? According to Brene Brown,
“Courage is a heart word. The root of the word courage is cor – the Latin word for heart. In one of its earliest forms, the word courage meant “To speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.” Over time, this definition has changed, and today, we typically associate courage with heroic and brave deeds. But in my opinion, this definition fails to recognize the inner strength and level of commitment required for us to actually speak honestly and openly about who we are and about our experiences — good and bad. Speaking from our hearts is what I think of as “ordinary courage.”
It takes courage to leave your busy mind and move into your heart, where your innate wisdom thrives and grace resides. It takes courage to be vulnerable, to stand up and to express our authentic self. Life invites us every moment of every day to be aware of our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors so that we can face and weed out any fears that show up. We often tend to be rooted in the negative stories from our past, making it impossible to bear the fruit of our joyful courageous being.
It takes practice to be willing to be vulnerable, to be willing to make a change, to be willing to speak your truth and to walk your talk even when you’re scared~ this is courage of the heart.
“I spent a lot of years trying to outrun or outsmart vulnerability by making things certain and definite, black and white, good and bad. My inability to lean into the discomfort of vulnerability limited the fullness of those important experiences that are wrought with uncertainty: Love, belonging, trust, joy, and creativity to name a few.” ~ Brene Brown
In moving through major changes throughout my life, I have always chosen to practice courage by speaking from my heart. When I was 23 years old, I opened and solely operated, “A Pinch of Thyme Catering”. I created my company out of my passion to serve and nurture others through custom designed events with delicious food. What I loved most about my catering business was the cherished relationships with my clients and employees.
My company grew to employ 80 amazing people. Because of this tremendous growth I had to move from the one-on-one client relationships that I so enjoyed into a higher-level position of management. My emotional and physical health was compromised due to the everyday managerial stress. My health showed my discontent; I was stressed to the max, infertile, diagnosed with IBS and multiple allergies. I felt like a failure, even though my business was thriving.
In 1995, I made a decision to listen to my heart. I realized that my heart and health were crying for a change. I was ready to make a commitment to heal. I knew that this meant selling my company despite the fact that my family, friends, and clients would be upset with this decision.
This leap was extremely scary for me. I had the limiting belief that in order for me to be valued, loved, successful, and important to others, I needed to work hard and long hours. Also, my identity was wrapped up in my business. If I no longer were the owner of “A Pinch of Thyme”, who would I be? Yet I knew I couldn’t continue down this path; I had to make the jump and trust the Universe would catch me.
In order to get to a place of readiness, I took inspired action by seeking guidance, healing and support in the holistic world of Energy work, Qigong, Meditation and Life Coaching. I went from a person who was spinning through life to one who was more centered, calm, and clear. From this space I sold my business and stepped into the unknown.
A miracle happened, after 14 years of infertility I became pregnant and had my first child. I reversed my IBS and my allergies went away. Plus, working one-on-one with clients as a Holistic Life Coach/ Energy Therapist renewed my passion.
“Heart of Courage ~ If you make a decision from your heart, you will benefit as well as everyone around you even if they don’t see it right away”. ~ Rose Sloan
What part of your life is crying out for you to take action from your courageous heart? What plunge are you willing to take to make your life better?
Here are 3 steps you can take to tap into the courage of your heart.
- Connect Your Mind & Body
Find a peaceful spot, close your eyes, quiet your mind, relax, and settle in to your chair. Take 5-7 deep breaths. Then bring an issue in your life you’d like to shift to mind. See it in 3-D in your mind’s eye. Then scan your body and notice where you feel the most tension and focus your energy there. If there is no clear spot, focus on your heart center. Just rest there, connected to those feelings, taking deep breaths. The purpose of this step is to redirect your focus from outside of you to becoming connected and centered in your body. Your body is a great storehouse of wisdom and guidance so I want you to reconnect with it and allow it to direct you.
- Connect to Your Courageous Heart
From this centered place, ask yourself if you are ready to take inspired action to move forward with the changes you are being so clearly shown you need to make. Remember, you are only asking if you are ready to take inspired action, you are not asking if you feel like you know what the next step is or know what outcome you want. The purpose of this step is to just get to a place of acceptance and willingness to take inspired action.
- Connect to Your Loving Support System
If you don’t know what your inspired actions should be, get help. You might have some blocks or fears that are preventing you from moving forward. These are keeping you stuck in a misdirected effort to keep you safe, when in fact they are creating more pressure and anxiety.
This is where Energy Therapy helped me the most. I was able to work with someone who helped move me through these blocks without having to dig up old dramas or rehash old wounds. My Energy Therapist gently and easily guided me past my rocky points to the fertile ground of possibility and choice. From there I was able to make the hard decisions and take the actions I’d been avoiding for some time without the angst that was paralyzing me.
If you do know what inspired actions you want to take, awesome, but I would still advise you to get help. Big changes are more successful when done as a team effort. Too often we get started with great intentions only to be thrown off course by the first obstacle we encounter. A coach in your corner can guide and encourage you when you need it the most.
“Your beautiful Self is ready to blossom as your heart leads the way.” ~ Kathy Grace
April is a fantastic month to shower your life with one baby step at a time. Step by step you will prepare the way for beautiful blooms of change to spring up in your life. May, June, and July will show up, the only question for you is whom do you want to be when they do?
As your Master Gardener if there is anything I can do to help tap into your “heart of courage” please give me a call.