Column: The Shared Heart New Dimensions of Relationship by Joyce and Barry Vissell
Cell Phones play a very important part in our lives right now. Who knows what 10 years will bring, right now they are almost like an attachment to the person who owns them. Recently I was going to our local gym to swim. I decided to just wait in my car and rest for a bit before walking in. I was parked so that I could see the people entering and leaving. Every single young person under the age of forty walked in while texting. Others a bit older walked in talking on their phone. One remarkably brave soul walked in with no cell phone in hand.
Last week we returned from Italy via Washington, DC. At the very long line of passport clearance almost every single person, myself included, were on their cell phones. People buy expensive cases to protect their phones. What happens if a phone announces that its battery is now at 10%? Most people act immediately. No one wants their cell phone to run out of power. A plan is quickly put in place to recharge the battery, no matter how inconvenient.
What about us? Are we not more important than our cell phones? Our “batteries” run low as well. Few people are as urgent to charge their own batteries as they are to charge up their cell phone. We push and push ourselves to keep going, and we don’t pay attention to our own battery, or need to be recharged. We know a woman who had no idea how depleted her batteries were. She left for work one morning, collapsed in her front yard, and was rushed to the emergency room. Her diagnosis: exhaustion!
Our own wellbeing is vastly more important than our cell phones! When our cell phones are dangerously low, and we can finally plug them into electricity, there is such a good feeling from knowing that we are taking care of our cell phone, and giving it what it needs. We deserve so much more!
Our need to recharge and connect to our power is so important. Some people try to ignore the need to be recharged through addictions. This can numb the need for recharging, yet it will never recharge us. Many people watch TV. Your favorite show can be entertaining, yet it cannot recharge you. Recharging comes from a true connection to your source of power. Imagine trying to charge your cell phone by showing it your favorite TV show, giving it a beer, or taking it on a long shopping spree. It’s a silly image, and obviously it doesn’t work. The same is true of us. Just as our cell phones need their real connection to electricity, so do we need a real connection to recharge.
So how do we recharge? Whatever it takes to connect with Source, God, Divine Love, The Infinite Being, whatever words you use to refer to the higher power, will bring a sense of recharging. These are my favorite ways of connecting. I like to sit outside and look at my garden. While looking at it I like to feel all of the things I am grateful for. The act of gratitude brings an opening of my heart. I also like to work in my garden. Just a small amount of gardening can help to connect me with the earth. I like to lie down on the grass without a blanket under me so that I can have direct contact with the earth. Even lying there for half an hour is like a giant connection back to my source. I like walking our dog Rosie in the woods. I love being alone with Barry and using the time in a quiet way of connecting and feeling our love for one another. I like to pray either alone or with Barry, and feel the closeness of our Creator, and feel that I am loved and being protected. Feeling the spiritual power around me is the most important way that I recharge.
Some people like to go to a retreat or special place. It can be important to retreat from the noise of the world and just be with ourselves. Some people get recharged by being creative, writing songs, creating art pieces, singing, or cooking an amazing meal. Some parents find that if they dedicate a longer than usual period of time to just playing with their child, joining their child in their level of play and wonderment of the world, without the use of distracting cell phones, they will feel recharged afterwards. Besides being alone with me, Barry’s favorite way of recharging is to go off into nature and be alone. If it can’t be for days at a time, then even a few hours will work wonders for him.
Sometimes our lives are very busy and we do not have the time to plug into our source of power for a long time. I would like to offer a simple practice that has helped me over the years wherever I am. Sit quietly if you can. This can also be done standing up in a long line. Close your eyes, obviously this will not work while driving. Take in a deep breath and imagine that there is a light coming from your true source of power. Breathe in this light through the top of your head, and feel as if it is coming down into your heart. Then as you breathe out, imagine there is love coming from your heart out into the world, or into whatever situation you find yourselves in. I have used this in busy airports, grocery lines, or sitting quietly in my garden, and each time I feel a sense of being connected and recharged.
Let’s strive to keep the battery of our own life operating at a very high level. Tell yourself, “I am more important than my cell phone, and I deserve to be recharged, and to be filled by the true source of my being.”
Here are a few opportunities to bring more love and growth into your life, at the following events led by Barry and Joyce Vissell: Feb 7-14-2016—Hawaii Couples Retreat; June 4-11 — Alaska “Inside Message” Cruise from Seattle; Jul 17-22—Shared Heart Summer Retreat at Breitenbush Hot Springs, OR; Oct 11-17—Assisi Retreat, Italy.
Joyce & Barry Vissell, a nurse/therapist and psychiatrist couple since 1964, are counselors near Santa Cruz, CA, who are widely regarded as among the world’s top experts on conscious relationship and personal growth. They are the authors of The Shared Heart, Models of Love, Risk to Be Healed, The Heart’s Wisdom, Meant to Be, and A Mother’s Final Gift.
Call Toll-Free 800-766-0629 (locally 831-684-2299), or write to the Shared Heart Foundation, P.O. Box 2140, Aptos, CA 95001, for further information on counseling sessions by phone or in person, their books and recordings, or their schedule of talks and workshops. Visit their website at SharedHeart.org for their free monthly e-heartletter, their updated schedule, and inspiring past articles on many topics about relationship and living from the heart.