4D explores living and leading from the heart. The heart has its own intelligence and wisdom, and it’s time we start listening to it.
In 1991, Dr. J. Andrew Armour introduced the term “heart brain” to describe the complex nervous system of the heart, which consists of approximately 40,000 neurons similar to those in the brain. However, in our busy lives, we often forget to tune in to the wisdom of our heart brain and gut emotions.
Despite this knowledge, how often do we really listen to the wisdom of our hearts? In our busy, stress-filled lives, we can easily get caught up in the demands of the day and ignore the messages our heart brains are trying to convey.
While we need the intelligence of our heads, we must strike a balance. Our heart brain can help us take risks, increase emotional intelligence, and connect with our team members, colleagues and employees in a deeper way. By listening to our hearts more often, we can be more connected to our work and have more motivated and loyal teams.
To live and lead from the heart, try placing your hand over your heart and taking a few deep breaths. This simple exercise can soothe your mind and body, calm anxiety and activate the release of oxytocin, which evokes a feeling of safety and trust.
In a world where leaders are often expected to be stoic, logical and analytical, it can be easy to forget about the power of leading and living from the heart. Even more, when tuning into the wisdom and humanity of our hearts, we can create more compassionate, empathetic and effective leaders.
The next time you’re facing a business decision or conflict with a team member, try asking your heart for the answer.
In the words of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”