Change Happens in the Heart

A change in behavior begins with a change in the heart.” Unknown

All behavioral changes happen in the heart, not the head. But, what does that really mean? We’ve all probably had the experience of reading a “self-help” book, deeply connecting with the message – knowing for certain that this was the missing piece that will finally change our patterns. And then a few short weeks later, we find ourselves doing the same thing over after we swore we would never ever do again. We tell ourselves we’re weak or need some accountability, but underneath it all it’s because the message hasn’t really made its way past our guarded ego. Maybe deep down we know we need to change, but our mind is so busy beating us up for our negative patterns. At the same time, change is a perceived threat by our ego – so it holds on tighter and doesn’t allow any meaningful transformation to begin. If we are really to change then, we have to quit fighting with ourselves and demanding that we should be different now. Instead, we might consider putting down the internal baseball bat and accept our circumstances just they are. Only when we see things exactly as they are – without our fear, judgment or drama, that we can begin to open the door to real change. The heart then, is that place within us where all possibility exists, absent our negative self-chatter or outdated beliefs. When we understand that we don’t have to be the person we were yesterday, a week ago or even an hour ago, we open up the space for our true intentions to come forward. Instead of our visions coming from our head – that part of us that says things must be a certain way, we can connect with our greater purpose and create a space where we are less reactive and more proactive. Where change once eluded us, we suddenly find our ability to change with ease.

Weekly Path to Peace: Open yourself up to your heart.  

Examine your current desire to change a behavior or pattern you feel no longer serves you. Do you tell yourself you should change? Do you find yourself beating yourself for all of your missteps and mistakes? Notice how often you tell yourself you “should” or “have to” change. Just observe and take notes for a couple of days.

If you didn’t have to change or think you should do things differently, what changes would you be ready to make? What feelings would be present if you were able to make these changes? What would be different if you didn’t beat yourself up this week or demand you change? Ask these questions and allow yourself to simply listen to the answers that come up as a way to connect with your heart.