The Importance of Heartfulness in Addiction Recovery
The Importance of Heartfulness in Addiction Recovery
By Kailey Fitzgerald
Recovering from addiction encompasses more than simply cleansing our bodies from substances. In early recovery, we typically begin to feel and experience emotions that we may have been entirely unaware of. This is due to the numbing effect that most drug users chase. We run from feeling our emotions for so long that once they begin to reappear, we have no idea how to manage them in a healthy manner.
We get sober to improve our quality of life. Therefore, understanding and practicing heartfulness will become extremely important in your journey towards a healthy, sober life. Heartfulness is the act of being sincere, loving, and displaying warmth towards others and being able to cast aside outside influences of the world. Achieving heartfulness can come naturally, but becoming comfortable with the feelings and emotions associated can take patience and work. In order to achieve heartfulness, we must move away from the mind and closer to the heart.
How Heartfulness Promotes Recovery
The substances we use while we are in active addiction are not the main problem but are our failed attempts at a temporary solution. The main problem that we face as addicts is our inability to properly regulate and address our emotions. Once we remove all substances from our bodies, we will begin to feel our emotions at a seemingly increased rate due to their past absence. Practicing achieving heartfulness will allow us to become comfortable in our feelings, as well as causing us to focus on the positive rather than the negative.
Once we begin to practice heartfulness, it is easier to achieve healthy and intimate relationships with our friends or families. Often times, intimacy is something that becomes to seem impossible for someone who has a past of addiction due to their fear of rejection or uncomfortability that they experience when sharing positivity. Because we were more acclimated to living destructive lives and most likely being surrounded by negativity, it is common to have the knee-jerk reaction to shy away from things such as compliments, or people who want to be intimate. Heartfulness works by teaching us to give compliments and love, which in turn makes it more comfortable to receive them over time.
How to Practice (and Eventually Achieve) Heartfulness
Heartfulness is the process of moving completely away from the mind and closer to the heart. When we are trapped inside of our minds, our lives and interactions with others become polluted with illusions, selfishness, and lustful desires which only take away from the true nature of our hearts. By nature, humans are loving and caring living beings who crave human connection. Heartfulness allows us to remove the pollution of the negative outside influences that have tainted our minds to feel, want, and behave in undesirable ways. There are seven pivotal steps that each person must take in order to achieve heartfulness.
We begin to experience and take more notice of the things in our lives that provide joy to our hearts. Allowing ourselves to fully reap the benefits of experiencing joy in the little things will begin to lessen our stress, fears, and anxiety of the unknown. This begins to clear up the pollution of the mind, bringing us a step closer to the true nature of our hearts.
Being Present with your Heart
While in meditation, we should become present with how we feel in our hearts. This will allow us to begin seeing, hearing, and accepting the things around us with our hearts rather than our minds. This form of meditation is the opposite of mindfulness, which asks us to utilize our minds to promote present awareness. Instead, we cast aside all thought and look into our hearts. This allows us to be in the moment with gratitude, acceptance, compassion, and the true nature of our hearts.
This step is about calming our minds in order to begin to open our hearts. While in meditation, we begin to let go of our thoughts about our daily life, attachments, worries, and desires. We begin to free ourselves by letting go of the distractions of the mind, allowing us to move closer to our hearts. This step is solely the practice of removing all outside influences in order to move towards focusing on the inside – the heart.
Being One with your Heart
Now that we have let go of all thoughts and distractions from the outside, we can breathe into the gentleness of our hearts. We are experiencing the love, light, and peace of our hearts while we let go of the pollution of our minds and the outside world. We begin to listen to our hearts and become encompassed by it through our meditation. This allows us to experience the one true emotion – love.
Increased Awareness in your Heart
This step is about expanding our awareness of our hearts. As we meditate, we become fully aware of the openness and acceptance that our heart is trying to provide us. Now that we have gotten rid of the worldly distractions, our heartfulness is beginning to expand into our heart essence. This allows us to just simply be. All of the confusion and stress of trying to be something or someone fades away and we become comfortable with the being that we are naturally.
Receiving the Beauty and Light
This step is about allowing ourselves to receive the pure light that we find within our hearts. We learn to receive rather than to think and do. Once we begin to experience the light and acceptance in our hearts, we will also begin to notice it in the outside world. We can begin to focus on the good, rather than becoming distracted with the bad.
Spiritual Fulfillment of the Heart
This stage is about finding the spiritual fulfillment we are seeking through heartfulness and the essence of our hearts. We begin to truly understand love and experience it within ourselves and within the world. We have successfully become able to cast aside all pollution of thought such as desires, wants, fantasies, and delusions. Instead, we focus on just being in the presence of the heart. This allows us to find inner joy and acceptance that is independent of the world around us and all outside influences. We have learned and explored our hearts and continue to do so in order to learn about who we truly are despite what the world wants us to be.
Author Bio: Kailey Fitzgerald is a writer in the recovery community. Her life’s passion is to help others who struggle with similar mental health-related issues. She also is attempting to aid in the fight to break stigmas related to substance abuse and mental illness.
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