Did you know that the energy emanating from your heart is approximately 5000 times greater than the energy your brain generates? The energetic vibrations of the heart permeate every cell in our bodies and create an electro-magnetic field which envelops the entire body and extends out in all directions into the space around us. Using special measuring devices called magnetometers, it’s been found that the radiation of heart energy can be measured up to 8 or 10 feet away from us.
Research has shown that aside from the function normally associated with the heart (i.e. pumping oxygen-rich blood into every living cell in our bodies); it actually possesses the equivalent of its own brain – in other words, a heart-brain. This “heart-brain” is constantly interacting and communicating with the head brain on neurological, biochemical, biophysic and energetic levels.
One of the most important ways the heart can influence and communicate with the brain is when it is coherent – in other words, when it’s experiencing stable, wave-like patterns in its rhythms which are called sine-waves. Heart Coherence is the smooth, ordered rhythm of the heart that brings all the organs and systems of the body into synch with each other. When this happens, many benefits can be observed amongst which are: more clarity, the ability to be better at decision-making and a greater sense of well-being. “Lack of heart coherence affects our vision, listening, reaction time, mental clarity, feeling states, and sensitivity. Not only is our overall functioning impaired by incoherence, but that state robs us of a sense of satisfaction. Then our system is misfiring and out of synch. …..this inhibits the higher centres of our brain from working as efficiently as they could…….Stress destroys coherence and incoherence causes stress” (From “The HeartMath Solution” by Doc Childre and Howard Martin).
Just think what this means in terms of all those emotions and feelings which are traditionally connected to the heart like love, compassion, appreciation and understanding. Think about how your whole being feels when you are consciously or unconsciously linking in with these emotions. You feel aligned and in flow. You feel open and connected. There’s a sense of ease and movement, things go more smoothly in your life, tasks become easier, communication is better. Your energy levels are high!
And think what your body and mind feel when it’s not like that, e.g. when you’re consumed with anger, resentment, frustration, or when you feel you’re not being listened to, or that you’re misunderstood or generally don’t feel good enough. Or when you’re feeling exhausted, burnt-out and overwhelmed!
The good news is that there is a very simple and effective way to facilitate better heart coherence which will not only help you to change your state at any time, but also allow you, with practice, to build your own heart coherence and resilience over a period of time. Not only will this impact beneficially upon your health, but it will also enable you to influence the emotional states of others and those people with whom you interact – in other words, you can make others feel good, too, just by being in a coherent heart state yourself! How good is that?
This simple technique is called “Heart Focussed Breathing” and it has been developed by the Institute of HeartMath.
Here’s what you do: Close your eyes, place your hands over your heart area and allow yourself to breathe a little more deeply than normal. Gently guide yourself into imagining that you are breathing in and out through your heart and bring all your focus and attention into doing this.
Now, with each breath, breathe in for a count of five and out for a count of five. Make sure your breathing is smooth, unforced and comfortable. It’s not hard to do, but it may take a few moments to get used to breathing this way and eventually, your breath will settle naturally into breathing in this rhythm.
Once this breathing pattern is established, bring to mind something that makes you feel love, gratitude or appreciation and focus on these positive emotions for about 5-10 minutes whilst maintaining the breathing pattern described above.
Practicing this technique needn’t take up a lot of time, but it can greatly add to your sense of well-being, and we could all do with some more of that! Many people find it helpful to spend a few minutes each day doing this breathing first thing in the morning and last thing at night. But you could also do it when travelling, or in a break at work or at school or while doing housework. It’s particularly helpful when you’re feeling stressed in any manner of ways, whether it’s being delayed by public transport or traffic jams, before giving a presentation, attending an important meeting, going for a performance review, doing an exam, coming to an important decision, or having an encounter with someone you’d rather not see.
Overall, Heart Focussed Breathing is a wonderfully simple aid to increasing your energy, coherence and resilience. By practicing this technique regularly and slowly building up the length of time you can maintain it, you increase the strength of the sine-waves*. This very much benefits the body and mind bringing feelings of calm and peace and a sense that all is well with you and your world. I can’t recommend this technique to you more highly!!
Why not try it out today? And do please write and let me know about how it helps you.
*A sine-wave is a series of curves which oscillate repeatedly in smooth, even waves.
For further information about HeartMath visit : www.heartmath.org