(I forget where I first heard this analogy, so please give me a source to credit if you know.)
Your heart is your engine. You can’t get anywhere if your heart is shut down.
A couple of weeks ago, I suffered a minor disappointment. I had what I thought was a good idea, but I researched it and it wasn’t turning out as I hoped. I thought it could lead to a new, interesting path, but it was a dead-end. I had to abandon the idea and go back to square one. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200.
In my disappointment, I felt my heart shut down. I started noticing grievances and remembering injustices. That’s not a normal state for me, and it made me feel depressed. It took me about 24 hours to notice that I was focusing on the negatives and had to “think up” as medium John Holland says, to look up and invite a higher emotion to guide me through the emotions of disappointment, frustration, and depression. I had to move through to move forward.
When we’re stuck in an emotion, we feel stagnant. The same thoughts and memories run like a broken record. We have a negative feedback loop playing and replaying for us. We first need to recognize the signs to see that we’re stuck and decide to do something differently.
By attempting to release an emotion, by processing it, we get our energy moving again. This keeps our heart revving at a steady, healthy pace; not elevated with anxiety or lowered with depression. With a healthy heart, we feel more flexible mentally and emotionally. Our mind feels more clear to think creatively for new solutions to problems, and our emotions become more fluid so we can make proactive choices in a situation.
Your heart is your engine. When’s the last time you looked under the hood for a check-up?