In our heart we are connected to others and the world around us. More simply put, we get on better with people, we are better leaders.
Interpersonal communication is highly influenced by whether our heart is open or closed for the day. An open heart breads a certain confidence because there’s no need to compare ourselves with others, we are a part of something bigger,
An open hearted workplace means our sense of small individuality (ego) becomes transient and is replaced by something bigger and this sits at the forefront of all of our interactions with others, something really good and very human.
People turn up more inspired when their heart is open, because when we open our heart, the moment becomes important. We get to relax with a certain clarity about the future and yet an clear focus on the present. I call this diversity – Vision, Inspiration and Purpose … or VIP.
An Open heart is the key to great HR and leadership. It’s authentic. You own it. It’s simple. It’s portable and it’s inside of you. It affects your productivity, your health, your happiness. It affects your relationship, your friendships, your children and your P&L at work. If you tap it, there’s no stopping you, if you don’t then it’s all just hard work and struggle. An open heart contains a personal – Vision, Inspiration and Purpose (VIP) and this affects everything important. It is without doubt the single most important ingredient in determining the quality of life, work life balance and the essential exchange in relationships. It puts us, at an individual and team level, in control of our own dialogue with life.
This is a beautiful reality.
From a HR point of view, if a company spent their whole training budget doing nothing other than opening people’s heart and developing the qualities of the heart, it is no exaggeration to say that this effort alone would bring individuals and teams to the highest goal of business life.
You have to know this totally because to focus on mind or emotion, or to separate mind and heart is to think that what we want in life is going to guarantee happiness and health, it makes the heart and soul (the driving force of vision, inspiration and purpose), small.
If HR avoids heart and soul at work, people are locked into their own smallness. This means their emotions and mind dominate. It’s exhausting. When mind and emotions are separated from heart and soul, people cannot see the connection between what is natural, beautiful, and their work which in turn leads to exhaustion.
By connecting heart and soul in our understandings and awareness, we understand the big picture of life and business – I call it the helicopter view.
In times of challenge, pain or suffering it is the human heart that can explain the why, and therefore teach us to have strength, real resilience and good heartedness toward others, even under pressure.
Our interpersonal relationships at work are vastly improved with an open heart. At the very core of our deepest humanity are compassion and loving-kindness. From this core, one feels a great sense of enjoyment in working with others and serving clients. It is therefore, through the heart that we can find the way to enjoy working with our clients, friends and colleagues (even competitors), and ultimately, a way to really enjoy work.
The heart is the centre around which your life can revolve. But it is not the emotional centre. The heart is often mistaken as a nice fuzzy feeling in the centre of the chest, but that is the emotional centre. The heart is different.
Opening your heart and balancing your mind doesn’t mean rushing around solving the world’s problems, because those obstacles are countless and that rushing around is in itself part of the world’s problems. By listening to your own heart, to your own particular gifts, it enables you to focus on what you really love to do and to express yourself without tension or reaction. The deepest experience of work life is awakened when each individual finally takes this responsibility. We become the mirror of the change we would love to see in the world; we must first learn to find peace and harmony within.
Great leadership comes from an open heart.
When we explore the term heart in common language we find that ‘heart’ means the central or innermost part of something such as the ‘heart of the city’, it also means the essential or vital part of something such as “what is the heart of the matter?”
A leader with a ‘lot of heart’ is someone with determination. To ‘lose heart’ means to be discouraged so we see that the will of a leader emanates from their heart. We refer to the heart when we talk about generosity or sincerity as well as consideration, understanding and helpfulness as when we say, “He/she has a big heart.” or “She/He has a clear heart.” When a leader is cruel or mean or when someone shows no regard for others we say, “His/Her heart is closed or small or cold or that he/she has no heart at all, heartless.”
The surface of our being is mind, while the depth of it is heart. The heart is clarity the mind is personality. It is through the heart that we feel ourselves or know ourselves. Once a person understands how to open their heart, to explore the character and the mystery of heart, they understand the language of good business and career success because they know their own personal truth.
So each of us has the choice: To live with an open heart or not. But it takes a certain trust:
- The skills for living with an open heart requires a trust, a trust that when faced with what seems to be an insurmountable challenge, we will survive.
- It does not necessitate becoming religious.
- The open hearted life is not lived in temples, or on particular days of worship, nor is it dependent on reverence to a statue or icon;
- An open heart is lived every single moment of our lives.
- The state of our heart is reflected in what people see of us.
- An open heart is revealed in what we think, our secret thoughts and our ideas.
People say put your heart into it; it means to become fully invested. It means to throw the full weight of your humanity behind something. There are no half hearted success stories. We must be vigilant. Our heart must remain invested. When the heart goes out of something we automatically sabotage it. So, if we can invest ourselves in maintaining the commitment of our heart we will automatically achieve many of our business and personal dreams.