Tips to Keep your Heart HOPing: Healthy, ‘Open’, and at Peace

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Heart Healthy — Physically & Spiritually:

1. Walk, bike, run, rollerblade, snowshoe, or make love to your partner surrounded by nature, in the woods, by water. Take in your environment. Be present!

2. Eat less sugar and low fatty foods, choosing bread made of sourdough for example, instead of whole wheat.

3. Quit smoking.

4. Keep your stress down by talking it out, sharing with friends or family, or find a therapist.

5. Find joy as often as possible.

6. Feel accomplishments. Slow down and take them in. Be proud!

7. See beauty everywhere, instead of what could be improved.

8. Smile and laugh often with friends and by yourself.

9. YOU decide what to focus on by choosing what makes you feel good and fulfilled, not stressed.

Heart Open — Physically & Spiritually:

1. Read about trust and love between animals and humans, about inter-species stories like the companionship between an orangutan and a dog.

2. Watch movies that make you cry or simply touch your heart. Realize you are not alone. Appreciate your feelings.

3. Read stories in the Bible or other good books that talk about seeing with more than your eyes, and instead, with an inner understanding that we are all connected to one another because of the Christ presence within us, since we are all made in God’s image.

4. Forgive instead of judging and closing your heart. Why? Because YOU will benefit. It is not about them but you we are talking about now. Keeping an open heart requires radical acts of compassion in order to keep you out of the ego trap of righteousness, anger and revenge. Forgiveness cuts the chain that binds us to them. Anger, revenge, and righteousness keep us chained to them. Yuk! — Get away!

Heart at Peace — Physically & Spiritually:

1. Let go of things you don’t control.

2. Do your most formidable undertaking first thing in the morning.

3. Don’t worry about what others are thinking…or even saying. Let it go! Stop caring so much!

4. Take 10 deep breathes slowly in and remember to slowly release them.

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