Last weekend, I had a very interesting conversation with a lady who serves as a Stephen minister at a congregation I was visiting for a Stephen Ministry workshop. As she was driving me to the airport for my trip home, we were processing the workshop and talking about helping those who are suffering. She said something that really caught my attention and that I also found to be very true in my own experience: “Sometimes you heart has a hard time catching up to your mind. The mind can process things very quickly, but the heart needs time to work.”
Isn’t that true? Our minds can work much faster than our hearts can, especially as we go through a difficult time. We know how to analyze the situation from all angles. Sometimes we know what we need to do to cope with the situation. But unless the heart is in sync with the mind, we are not fully able to move forward and often get stuck. I often hear people tell me that they feel stuck in a situation they are in. A lot of times it is because their hearts and minds are out of sync and disconnected from one another.
Giving ourselves the gift of grace, patience and time as we walk through different life situations is vital to our ability to move forward and get unstuck. We live in an age of impatience, of fast Google answers, information coming at us in all directions and that also translates to how we deal with life. Wanting to move past something quickly requires us to ignore our hearts and we know that is not a healthy way of living. Our suppressed feelings will have a way of making themselves heard when the pressure becomes too much. That is how people can go from functioning one day to having a complete meltdown the next. Sometimes the heart just cannot be ignored any longer!
Another reason why we may suppress our hearts is because those difficult emotions, like sadness, disappointment or grief are hard to feel! Naturally, we want to more past those as quickly as we can! However, we often forget that the only way to truly get past those emotions is to feel them. Being able to take deep breaths and pay attention to the state of the heart is the only way to process and release those emotions. If you have a hard time coping with difficult feelings, know that you don’t have to walk this journey alone! Find a friend, a mentor, a Stephen minister, a pastor or a therapist who can help you process them. Once you are able to heal your heart, your mind and your heart will be back in sync with one another and moving forward in a situation will be a lot easier. Your whole being will move in unity on the path of healing.
What has your experience of how your mind and heart interact been like for you? What do you find that works well to keep your heart and mind in sync with one another?