Connecting with what we really want in our inner heart is a way to keep fire energy happy. This can mean anything from who you want to spend your time with to what you really want to eat to stay balanced (In the hotter months, we recommend cooling foods such as ripe tomatoes and watermelon. You can also add more ice to a glass of wine as they did in ancient Greece). Speaking your truth is another powerful way to liberate the heart. This doesn’t mean blurting everything out.
In Tibetan medicine, they refer to speaking ‘like tamed wild horses’, which is about speaking things as they are, but tamed gracefully by wisdom and compassion, and delivered with strength, clarity, grace and integrity. Speaking from the heart is a skill set that can be nurtured. At a time when many are speaking as a group and have lost their voice, this is a means of individual liberation.
To open our heart, it is important to get out of the habit of using our physical bodies as a dustbin for our emotions and move things through us. One way to do this is the movement of dance. Dance can help us connect, with both ourselves and others, and releases stagnant, latent energy. It lifts our spirits. When you wake up in the morning, instead of immediately checking your emails, take some time to listen to music. You could create a special ‘Fire Energy’ playlist of songs that bring you gratitude, joy and happy moments. Gently ease your body into some dance and open your arms in the air and FLY. Conductors tend to live very long lives because they are always opening their hearts! If this sounds too energetic, just listen whilst you brush your teeth. Or you could lie back with a cushion behind your shoulders or a yoga block between them, and stay there for 3-5 minutes – Yin yoga style – to open your heart.
When something difficult happens which gives you pain or anger, or if you are struggling to forgive someone, a really profound antidote is to anchor your attention into the little things which you are grateful for. Switch your attention onto something else – the smile of a child, the comfort and safety of bed, a beautiful flower, sunshine. It can even be something as trivial as a new pair of shoes you recently bought. This immediately shifts the focus and gives you time to process and shift the emotions. In relationships, forgiveness births the ultimate transformation, but it can be really hard to reach if we are not there yet. However, even if we just set the intent to forgive, that, in itself, can really shift something. Looking for reasons why you are grateful for someone being in your life can help you to arrive at an open heart – this is why forgiveness is so liberating.
Dance like nobody’s watching
Summer is a time for festivity and fun, it is the season of social connection, playfulness, games and inspiration. It is a time to move your body in a free way, hit the music loud, dance, express yourself, let it all out! Go for walks with friends, chat and laugh. When you move your body, lead with an open heart. Allow yourself to enjoy yourself. Find new and inspiring things you like to do. Perhaps do a cooking course or join a masterclass (online) and learn from an expert. Book tickets to a festival, a concert, the opera. Take yourself out of your comfort zone and remember that life is for living. Explore, adventure, create new memories.