Heartfulness is a word you may have noticed quite a bit around here. You may not be sure exactly what it means yet, but we can bet that if you're here, you're already practicing it in your life. While the word itself may not be in the dictionary yet, but heartfulness is most definitely a movement that we are excited to see unfolding across a growing number of fields.
What is heartfulness?
Heartfulness is an embodiment of our core values with applications and nuances that grow alongside us-- that means as you practice, it will change with you! It can be distilled down to three guiding principles, all of which are ongoing practices:
1) Heart-Centered Leadership (the 'heart')
Embodying heartfulness in our lives means we are committed to long-term personal growth. It implies the truth that leadership begins at home in ourselves and involves a deep responsibility to those we serve and care for. Leading from the heart means that one aligns themselves with harvest principles, prioritizes effort that holds the highest benefit for all, and reflects on one's behavior with the intention to grow and impact the world in a positive way. Put simply, it is emotional intelligence in action.
2) Creativity (the 'art')
We often emphasize the art in heartfulness because we know from personal experience that a commitment to integrating the arts or any creative modality into our lives is a superhighway toward the growth and character described above. It's also a lot of fun, which increases both the likelihood and speed of learning. Science is now corroborating what humans have known to be true through practice for centuries: the arts are what make us human and hold limitless potential for the growth of our psyches.
3) Mindful Awareness (the 'ness')
The third dimension of heartfulness is the cultivation of mindful awareness. This dimension (most especially) is the reason that the application of heartfulness grows and changes as we do. Mindful awareness is a practice that we humans are innately hardwired to practice, but that can also be developed through ongoing attention from moment to moment. The cliche "stop and smell the roses" is an allusion to this. What makes mindful awareness so special is that it is the glue of the other two aspects. Unlike art, you don't need any physical tools and unlike many aspects of leadership or social-emotional intelligence, you don't need to practice mindfulness in relation to other people, although you can.
What's beautiful about the 'ness' in heartfulness is that it allows space for our experience in the moment-- whatever that is-- and urges us to simply be with our own authentic experience from moment to moment, not necessarily try to change it.
We invite you to try it now with us. Wherever you are, simply pause and notice. Perhaps take a breath and notice how that feels. Are you sitting or standing? What is your body contacting? Can you pause your stream of thoughts and take stock of where you are? What time of day/night? What can you hear? Smell? See? What are you touching? What thoughts, emotions, or sensations are coming up? No judgement, only appreciation and compassion.
This practice of orienting to the moment through our senses and pausing the 'doing' part of the body can help reset the nervous system so that we have greater capacity for the doing parts of heartful practice that bring this practice full circle into a lifestyle.
Thank you for taking the time to understand your own relationship to heartfulness. You are making a positive impact in the world simply by being you.