“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” ~Leo Buscaglia
There are many ways to energize and bring balance to the heart chakra. Here are some suggestions:
Connect: Spend time with family and friends. Make sure you are around people who make you feel appreciated and accepted. Hold a baby- watch you heart unfold as you hold a newborn in your arms. Animals, such as dogs and cats love us unconditionally. If you don’t have or cannot have a pet to love, visit a friend with a pet or visit an animal shelter. Nothing can open a closed heart as easily as unconditional love from an animal.
Entertain yourself: Peruse a romantic book or any book that warms your heart. Watch a heart warming or romantic movie.
Forgive: Blockages in this chakra are exacerbated by not letting go of past hurts, anger, grief, regret, etc. Love cannot flow if you harbor resentment. Let go. Work on forgiveness for yourself and others.
Consistency: Emotional ups and downs correspond with a blocked heart chakra. Loving some people and hating others, or loving selfishly, both cause blockages. Conditional love also indicates a blocked area of the heart center.
Give love: Cleanse and balance the heart chakra by loving others unconditionally and unselfishly. Make time daily to spread love, kindness, and a smile. Honestly reach out to help and bless others without expecting anything in return.
Incorporate the color green: Spend time in nature, surrounded by natural greenery. Do dome gardening. Wear green clothing or jewelry (see crystals below). Bathe in the green decor, art, etc. Consume green foods and drinks.
Learning to love yourself is a powerful first step in attaining a healthy heart chakra. The “wounded child” resides in the heart chakra. Look into areas that may need healing. Opening the heart chakra after grief or personal struggle is not always easy. Be patient with yourself during the process. Journal, take a class about self-acceptance and self-love. Or you may want to look into professional help to help uncover and heal limiting beliefs and negative thinking. If you need professional help, don’t put it off. Take care of yourself and know that when one door closes a new one opens.
Some chest (heart) opening yoga poses are shown below. Practice these poses with a focus on the heart center and the intention of bringing balance to this chakra.
- Cat/Cow pose combination (Marjaryasana to Bitilasana)
- Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)
- Easy Camel
- Camel Pose
- Warrior I (Virabhadrasana I)
- Half Circle Pose (Ardha Mandalasana)
- Parsva Tadasana (Sidebending Mountain Pose)
- Cow Face Pose (Gomukhasana)
- Bow Pose (Dhanurasana)
The following oils are thought to help bring balance to the heart chakra: eucalyptus, pine, tea tree, spearmint, cedarwood, rose, carnation, and lily of the valley. Also, ‘Joy’ essential oil from Young living is a perfect blend for compassion, love, and oneness. Try a drop on the heart mixed with a drop of carrier oil (like coconut or grapeseed oil) or diffuse for aromatherapy.
Crystals are thought to have healing energies. Try keeping a stone with you, where you can see it or use them for meditation. The following are some of the crystals thought to help energize the heart chakra: Green Aventurine (heal), Rose Quartz (heal, open), Emerald (open), Jade (balance), Lithium Quartz (balance, activat, heal), Chrome Diopside (heal, open), Ruby (open and activate), Peridot (awaken), Green Kyanite (connect third-eye to heart), Green Tourmaline (open, energize)
Try Mudras (hand positions for meditation)…
The lotus mudra opens and awakens the heart chakra. In Buddhism the lotus blossom represents heart opening, growth, and enlightenment. The lotus flower is rooted in mud and darkness, grows up through water, and blooms beautifully above the surface. Like the lotus, we have our own struggles and dark places. Through experience, we grow toward the light to finally emerge and blossom. Bring hands together in front of the chest. Heels of the palms come together, thumb and pinky tips touching. Let your fingers separate like blossoming lotus petals. Like the open flower, open yourself to your divine source. Receive whatever you need and much more.PictureThe ganesha mudra stimulates the heart.
The Hindu elephant god, Ganesha, is the remover of obstacles. He has the strength and power of an elephant, but spreads a message of peace and tranquility. He is also the god of new beginnings. Practicing this mudra, we can draw in qualities of strength, calm and courage. This mudra is said to strengthen heart muscles, open bronchial tubes and release tension in this area. It opens the heart chakra and gives us courage, and helps us connect with others.
Bring both hands in front of your chest, elbows bent. Position left hand, palm facing out, thumb points down. Form a claw, bending the four fingers of your left hand and clasp them with the four fingers of your right hand. Right palm faces towards the chest. Inhale deeply. Exhale; pull both arms apart while keeping all eight fingers locked. Feel the stretch in shoulders and chest. Inhale again and relax your arms while maintaining the mudra lock. Repeat six times. Interchange hands, with right palm facing out and the left palm facing in and repeat this process.
Try practicing the Three-Part-Breath technique (video below)
(Dirga Pranayama) is a simple technique that energizes the heart chakra. The “three parts” are the abdomen, diaphragm, and chest. To practice the three-part breath, fill the lungs fully as though you are breathing into your belly, then ribcage, and then upper chest. Exhale completely by reversing the flow.
Breathing deeply increases oxygen supply, which helps decrease stress and anxiety. Also, focusing on the body during 3-part breath brings awareness to the present moment and calms the mind.
Visualization: Find a comfortable position, either sitting or laying down. Keep the spine straight, close your eyes and focus on the breath. Inhale; allow the breath to travel down to the center of your chest. Envision breathing in vibrant green, healing energy into the heart center. Continue breathing and envisioning for 2-5 minutes. You also may want to hold your hands over the heart chakra while meditating.
Below are two different types of meditation guides for opening the heart chakra. Give them a try.
Try Daily Affirmations to Balance the Heart Chakra:
I give and receive love effortlessly and unconditionally.
I live a life full of love for myself and others.
I make my decisions based on love.
I courageously love unconditionally.
I forgive those who need forgiving for not being what I wanted them to be.
I am connected to all things in the universe.
My heart is full of joy and thankfulness.
Try a Reiki or Energy Healing: You would be surprised how cleansing, calming and balancing it can be. During a balancing session, a practitioner can assess and help get your energy cleared and flowing.