Follow Your Heart

 

Has anyone ever asked you, “What’s your heart telling you?” 

Or maybe you’ve told someone, “Follow your heart”.

What do these statements mean to you personally?  While you ask yourself, I ask that you come up with a thoughtful and reflective response before we go on reading together.

For me, when I was growing up there were times when my parents, specifically my Mom would ask me, “What’s your heart telling you, Kelly?”  Here’s an example.  I came home from school one time telling my Mom about a girl that was being a bully to me.  I told Mom how angry it made me that the bully always singled me out to kick.  She did this while the teacher’s back was turned and, inevitably, she never got caught in the act or in trouble for it.  It both hurt and bothered me that this cruelty was happening to me.  Mom listened patiently and with kindness as I shared my anger and frustration.  

As I finished telling her one day, she said, “I’m sorry this is happening to you Kelly.  I wish I could fix it for you, but I can’t.  I can try to help you come up with solutions to fix this problem, but first I think the question is, “What is your heart telling you that you should do about this?”

I sat in my chair by the kitchen counter fingering a piece of loose leaf notebook paper, nervously.  I didn’t like being in this position of having to possibly confront my bully… but knew in my heart that’s what the next step was.  Tears welled up in my big brown eyes and started to trickle down my cheeks as I looked up at Mom, my lower lip quivering.  She wrapped her arms around me while I cried a bit before I answered into her neck with my response, “my heart says I need to tell her to stop kicking me.”  We finished our hug and pulled back away from each other, so there was a little distance so that we could look into one another’s eyes.  I still had tears on my face so I wiped them away.

“Kel, I think you’re heart is telling you the right thing to do.  If I can, do you want to hear a bit more advice on how to approach her?”  My little head bobbed up and down relaying my affirmative.  “You may want to do this in private so that you don’t embarrass her in front of the whole class.  Take her aside before school and tell her exactly what you told me.  If she still kicks you, then you may need to get your teacher involved.”  

My little heart was pounding at the thought of having to talk one on one with this bully. But, I knew my heart was telling me what I needed to do, and Mom was helping guide me to do the right thing.

The next day before school, feeling anxious and with sweaty palms, I approached the bully while she was at her locker.  She turned around when I said, “_____?  Can I talk to you for a minute?”  She basically grunted at me, so I just continued, “I don’t appreciate or like you kicking me.  You need to stop it.  It’s not okay.”  At that I turned and walked away with my heart beating rapidly.

The school day started, but by mid morning I felt an incredibly hard kick to first my butt and then my lower leg.  I whirled around and flared at her and mouthed, “STOP!”  The teacher then turned around from the front of the room, not noticing what was going on. When the teacher turned her back again the bully struck again.  That was it.  I’d had enough.  I wasn’t the type of kid that wanted attention, good OR bad, so to get the teacher involved in this matter wasn’t too enticing to me.  Without much thought I reacted in the moment.  The teachers back was still turned and I recoiled my leg as far as I could and let my little leg go sailing straight into her leg with such a force that she gasped at me.  I looked her straight in the eye and said yet again, “STOP!”

Looking back, I don’t believe I handled the situation in the best way possible.  Yes, I listened to my heart and confronted my bully.  But, I should have then gone to the teacher for help instead of doing unto her what she’s done to me.  I will say this, the bully never once kicked me again but she sure made mean faces at me.  I was SUPER thankful she moved away that next year though!

From a young age I learned to follow my heart.  I’m thankful that my parents helped me learn to do that.  It has been a HUGE blessing throughout my life, despite it not always being easy to do just that.  I admit, more often than not, following my heart means stepping outside of my comfort zone into the unknown.  And that can often times be scary, uncomfortable, and sometimes even intimidating.  But guess what?  That’s what has taught me to grow the most in my life.  When I follow my heart and step into that unknown.  How so you may be asking?  Well I’ll share a few examples.  

When I was a senior in high school, and after high school, I told my parents, “I don’t want to go to college.  I don’t like school and never have.  I don’t know what I want to do for a future work so I don’t want to waste money on something I don’t know that I actually want to do.”  

They we’re fine with my statement but said, “Well you need to get a job then.”  I agreed, willingly.  

All the while I was told by individuals and 2 teachers, “You’ll never go back to school (college) if you don’t go now.”  I just looked at them and kept my mouth shut.  Nearly two years later I’d followed my heart, a KNOWING to become a Massage Therapist.  And 7 years after that I again went back to school, this time for Health Coaching which was yet again another time when I followed what my heart was telling me to do.

I don’t share this story to disgrace or put down the people that told me I’d never go back to school.  Quiet the opposite, actually.  I share this story because they were telling me what they’d learned from seeing with MOST people that if a student didn’t go to college right away, they’d probably never go back.  They truly didn’t know me, my heart, or how I follow the promptings of my heart.

Today I continue to follow my heart.  Sometimes it’s easy, and sometimes it makes my hands sweat.  Sometimes I almost chicken out, but then end up following through because I can’t shake that feeling that I KNOW this is what I need to do.  It’s only then that I feel better no matter how scary it may be, the uncertainty of it all playing out.

So now I ask you, “What’s your heart telling you to do today?  What is you heart speaking and revealing to you?  What promptings are happening inside your heart that are ready to come out into this world to be shared?”

Following our heart can be incredibly scary, AND incredibly beautiful all at the same time.  It’s my heart desire that you would go out on that limb, into the unknown and follow your heart.  Follow your heart and FLY with its truths.  I’m cheering you on, being your biggest fan.  Personally, I’m so excited for you and ready to watch you soar!

Go forth and follow your heart!

 

 

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