“The heart knows reasons
that reason cannot know.”
~ Blaise Pascal
When it comes to making decisions in Life, there are really only two choices at stake: following the logic in your head, or following the wisdom of your heart.
People who make logical decisions weigh their options carefully and act out all possible future scenarios in their heads. Massive amounts of time and energy are consumed as they try their best to arrive at an answer that makes the most sense. They succumb to external input from family, friends, the media and their culture rather than tuning into their own intuition. In the end, they are “satisfied” with their decision, but they never fully rid themselves of the nagging feeling that somehow things could have been better or different.
People who make decisions from the heart throw logic out the window. They leave behind the pros and cons and stay centered in the present moment to make their decisions instead of engulfing themselves with worry about their future. Their decision might not make 100% sense to them, but they trust it anyway. They don’t care what other people think because they know that their intuition is tapped into the highest good for all. In the end, a decision made from the head results in security. But a decision made from the heart results in fulfillment.
A few years ago I faced a major “head versus heart” decision when I kept getting the nagging feeling to quit my job in order to focus on my home based business. At first I ignored my intuition, not wanting to give up the security of a regular paycheck. Using logic, I kept convincing myself that I didn’t really have the skills to make a living as an entrepreneur.
I ignored the voice until it eventually expanded from a whisper to a shout. After 6 months of gagging my gut instinct, I was exhausted, depressed, underweight and confused. My doctor encouraged me to take a temporary leave from work but three months later, I quit my job entirely and followed my instincts.
The day I quit my job felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders. Of course I was still terrified about the insecurity that came with being your own boss. But deep inside I knew I had made the right decision, and there was a silence in my mind I had never experienced before. What I was feeling was the relief that comes when you make a decision to follow your heart.
The reason we hesitate to follow our hearts is because we know it’s a path that requires that we face our deepest fears. Fear of abandonment, fear of loss, fear of failure, and fear of unworthiness are universal fears that every human experiences. But real joy only comes from living in alignment with the highest possibility for your life, which goes hand in hand with courage. You’ll never receive the rewards that come from following a heart-centered life if you’re stuck making decisions from a place of fear and insecurity.
If you decide to follow the path with heart, it’s essential that you become aware of all the ways your logical mind will try to regain control of your actions. One of the biggest culprits is distraction. Obsessive eating, shopping, working and most of all, compulsive thinking are all examples of addictive behaviors that aim to distract you from the wisdom of your heart. After all, if you’re continually preoccupied with the voice in your head or on a hunt for gratification in the external world, you’ll never have time or energy left over to pay attention to your internal world.
Following your heart requires that you set aside time to listen to it. I find that taking a few minutes in the early morning to “tune in” before my logical mind is awake is of the best ways of tapping into my intuition. I often make notes because when I return to them at a later time, it’s easy to see that the wisdom coming through was much more powerful than anything my head would ever dream up.
It’s been over three years since I quit my job and guess what? I’m still alive! My business is thriving and in terms of my “career”, I feel joyful, grateful, free, and fulfilled. There have been ups and downs along the way, but I never have regretted my decision for a second.
Following the heart is a practice as well as an ongoing process, but it’s an adventure that is always worth it.