We have all probably heard the saying, “Keep your heart open”, at one point in our lives. Maybe from a good friend, a family member, or from an article online. In my experience, I heard the saying many times before truly listening to what it actually meant. It was not until a few years ago that I pondered the idea of keeping my heart open. It was obvious to me that my heart wouldn’t physically burst open, but I wondered what would happen if I kept my heart open. Would my life drastically change or would it virtually stay the same? Was it even possible for me?
Due to my curious nature and love for growth, I wanted to discover what life with an open heart would be like. I wanted to embody this openness and learn as much as possible from this state. So, I meditated on this idea of keeping my heart open for months. During these meditations, I visualized moments of when I closed off my heart to others, moments where I wish I had kept my heart open, and moments where I had my heart wide open without even realizing it. I wanted to learn all I could from each of these situations.
Through pain, heartache, joy, and bliss, I have realized that keeping your heart open means always being open to love. Not conditional love that many of us experience, but true, unconditional love that makes up everything within this Universe. The unconditional love that breathes life into our lungs and keeps the Sun burning bright.
Through eyes of unconditional love, I realized that keeping your heart open also means staying open to the infinite possibilities around us. If we already are or want to be on a path of growth, it cannot be done from a full cup. We have to leave room in our mind, body, and soul for new possibilities, people and ways of being to flow into our lives.
The following is what I discovered on my personal journey by opening my heart to unconditional love. These things continue to help me in keeping my heart open to the infinite.
Whatever you like to do outside, go do it. Surround yourself in nature and let Pachamama hold you close. Lay in the grass, breathe with the trees, play in the mud; do anything that makes you feel grounded and connected to her. Let her wrap you up in a hug and allow her unconditional love act as a catalyst for your growth.
First, visualize it in your mind’s eye. What does love look like to you? Does it look like a hug from a friend, your favorite place, or is it represented by a color, shape, sound, feeling? When you get a grasp of what love looks like to you, practice switching the lens on your human eyes. Recognize where you see this representation of love in your everyday life. Take note of these moments.
Spread the love!
Spread love to every being you encounter without expectation, fear, or reciprocation. Truth be told, you have no control over how others react to your actions, nor is it your responsibility to have control over their reactions. Have no fear over what they say or do afterward. You only control your own actions. So radiate love anyways! This is a lifelong practice but I believe in you. Let your love shine!
Remember your true nature. You are absolute infinite and unconditional love. It’s quite difficult to truly love others before loving yourself first. Allow yourself to accept love from others but most importantly, learn to love yourself. Carve out time in your life where you can show yourself love; whether that’s by taking a salt bath, going on a run, practicing yoga, or by scheduling time to just be by yourself.
Sometimes things don’t work out- relationships, plans, or expectations for the future. Accept the ebb and flow of life. Begin to realize that everything is happening for you, not to you. Everything physical is impermanent anyway. The only thing that remains constant in physical human life is you. Know that you always have access to the most powerful love- the love you have for yourself. If something doesn’t work out in your favor, accept that there is a purpose for why it happened; even if it’s simply so you can learn from it. Only then will you be able to keep your heart open to new possibilities that want to come into your life!
Feel how you feel. Don’t sugar coat it or top it with a pretty pink bow. Allow yourself to have access to these wider emotions. Once you feel it, forgive all parties involved, including yourself, and let go of any anger, grief, regret and stressors. Let go. It can be daunting and may take an extended period of time to forgive, but allowing these emotions to rule you in the present will only cause more pain. Let go and grow from it.
Remain soft in a world that can sometimes feel so hardened. In a world that may shame you from feeling wider emotions or shame you from spreading unconditional love. Ask yourself, “What would it look/feel/be like if we all lived as a vessel for love?”, and begin imagining your reality that way.
I will leave you with a quote from one of my favorite books,The Law of Divine Compensation. Marianne Williamson wrote, “Putting love first isn’t a life of ‘sacrifice’, as many have been taught. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Putting love first means knowing who you are and that you’re entitled to miracles. Putting love first means knowing that the universe supports you in creating the good, the holy, and the beautiful. It means knowing that you’re on the earth for a purpose and that the purpose itself will create opportunities for its accomplishment.”
It may take a while. It may take weeks, months, years, or even lifetimes. Keep going anyways. I see that you are love even though you may not. The world wants to see you shine as who you truly are!