How to Make Decisions From Your Heart
“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”
— ANTOINE DE SAINT-EXUPÉRY, THE LITTLE PRINCE
Have you ever been at a crossroads in your life and not known which path to take? Or, has an opportunity ever presented itself to you, and you’ve been confused about whether or not to jump all in, or let it pass you by? I have! In the past I used to find making decisions like these stressful and overwhelming. I’d ruminate over the (endless!) potential outcomes, write pros and cons lists and concern myself with what other people would think and say.
Thankfully, I’ve found a much easier way to make decisions - one that feels light and easy, and doesn’t cost me any sleep or impact my mental and emotional wellbeing ...
I make decisions with my heart, not my mind.
Mind centered decisions are outwardly focused, logical and formulaic. They often feel heavy and are filled with second guessing and confusion.
Heart centered decisions are inwardly focused. They are aligned with our values and often stem from an intrinsic knowing that something is or isn’t right for us. Although heart centered decisions don’t always feel easy, they often feel lighter and more expansive than mind centered decisions.
In hindsight, I see that I spent many years of my life making mind centered decisions, and that I missed out on incredible amounts of joy because of it. My decision making framework was too intensely focused on everyone else, rather than the person who mattered most - ME! Learning how to make heart centered decisions has filled my life with deep alignment and fulfilment. I’m constantly amazed at how much more my life flows when I make decisions from my heart, even if these decisions don’t make a whole lot of sense at the time (like packing up all my belongings and moving to the other side of Canada!)
Many of the women I’ve been speaking with lately, in my Live Free Lifestyle intake calls, want to learn how to make heart centered decisions and create a life for themselves that feels aligned, inspiring and joyful. Here’s some of the practical tips I share with them, and expand upon in my 8 week program ...
Get to know yourself. What is right for you?
Those of you who are familiar with my story will know that I spent many years doing all the things I thought I should do, and all the things everyone told me I needed to do, in order to be happy and ‘successful’. I ticked all the boxes and got married, bought a home, worked in a well paying job, had ‘fancy’ things and was a socialite - but I was never actually very happy.
I made decisions with my mind and used outwardly focused measures of success and joy to navigate my way through life. It wasn’t until living the way I was living, and feeling the way I was feeling became unbearable to me, that I was forced to make a change. That change meant getting to know myself and learning to listen to myself, so I could know what path was right for me as opposed to what was right for everyone else.
Make peace with your fear
Sometimes, when we feel fearful about a decision, we assume that we shouldn’t do it.
It feels scary to leave a job we know like the back of our hand, even though we dread showing up everyday, so we stay put.
It feels scary to put ourselves out there and make new friends, even though we’re desperately longing for connection with like-minded souls, so we stay hidden and ‘safe’.
It feels scary to open ourselves up to love when we’ve been hurt in the past, even though we would love to share our life with someone, so we stay guarded and closed.
As I shared in this article though, what’s important to remember when fear pops up is that it is mind driven and wants you to stay safe. Unlike your heart, that wants you to expand and thrive, your mind wants to keep you in a place that feels familiar and comfortable. Unfortunately though, this doesn’t make for a particularly inspired life which is why making decisions with our minds isn’t always the best thing to do!
Just because we fear something, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do it. Very often, we fear change because it will require us to expand and evolve and as beautiful as that is, especially in the long run, it can often feel uncomfortable in the short term. If you’re experiencing fear when it comes to making decisions, I encourage you to consider where your fear is stemming from …
Is your fear a deep intuitive knowing that something isn’t right for you OR is it showing up because the decision will lead to expansion and growth?
If it’s the latter, go for it!
How do you want your life to feel?
So often, we make decisions based on what the outcome will look like. I did! That’s why I had the husband, the house, the friends and the money. None of it ever felt good though. Yes, according to societal norms I was ticking all the boxes and doing all the right things, but inside I felt empty and unhappy.
These days, I make decisions based on how I want to feel. I want to feel free, creative, inspired, aligned and joyful, so I now use these feelings as a guide when I make decisions.
Will investing in a course fuel my creativity? Yes it will, so I’ll do it!
Will taking a few days off work each month to travel with people I love fill me with joy and make me feel free? Yes it will, so I’ll do it!
Will working with a Life Coach help me stay on track and feeling inspired and aligned? Yes it will, so I’ll do it!
When you’re faced with a decision, tuning in to how doing or not doing something will make you feel is a great way to make decisions from your heart.
Remember, tread gently and be patient with yourself as you learn to shift from making mind centered decisions to heart centered decisions. If you feel like you need extra support to connect with yourself, create a life you love and make decisions from your heart, then I’d love for you to join my Live Free Lifestyle program.
From my heart to yours,