February is the month where we see red all over…Valentines and Go Red for Women just to mention the two biggest established events. Go Red for Women is an important annual fundraiser to increase awareness, improve prevention and treatment of heart disease and stroke.

Interestingly, we all feel something when we see a red heart in pictures, red chocolate hearts, ruby and garnet red heart jewelry, or a heart décor.

Don't you love the red hearts?

Let me share with you a bit more about the science between the heart and the mind.

The heart is so powerful and, actually, research indicates that the heart controls the brain much more than we think. It’s not just a muscle pumping blood to all the organs of the body.

"Sometimes the heart sees what is invisible to the eye." ~ H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

The heart is where the deep feelings of love, excitement and gratitude originate.

Dr. Joel Khan, "America's Holistic Heart Doctor", mentions that some researchers refer to the heart as the "little brain” and there are 40,000 sensory neurons relaying information to the brain from the heart. He shares that the heart communicates to the brain and the body and that there is more information sent from the heart to the brain on a daily basis than vice versa.

Also noteworthy is that the electromagnetic field of the heart is exceptionally strong.

The HeartMath Institute shares that our thoughts and emotions affect the heart’s magnetic field, which energetically affects those in our environment whether or not we are conscious of it.

According to Dr. Khan, “the electrical activity of the heart and the brain can be guided into a synchronous electrical rhythm easily measured and displayed by simply focusing on positive and loving emotions emanating from the heart. This state of organ “coherence” is associated with improved higher level functioning, lower blood pressure and cortisol levels, and improved immune system function.”

Our Wellbeing

There is fascinating, emerging research about the mind and heart connection. It helps us to understand that we need to move beyond just focusing on our physical health when it comes to heart health. Our thoughts, feelings, beliefs, and perception of the environment, situations, and people strongly affect the body - and the heart. This means it isn't just a matter of eating better or exercising; we need to increase the awareness and manage our “mind chatter” to positively impact the health of our heart. Practices like daily gratitude - feeling grateful for even the smallest things and regular self-awareness checks to manage the negative mind chatter - are incredibly powerful.

"The face is the mirror of the mind, and eyes without speaking confess the secrets of the heart." ~ St. Jerome

When you check in with yourself regularly and become aware of your thoughts and feelings, you will realize that most thoughts and worries are the same you had yesterday. Our thoughts create tomorrow’s reality and we CAN change our results by managing our thoughts. Let go of the same old thoughts. They are not who you truly are and can be.

Focus on:

- What you want – your goals and passions
- Your strengths – what makes you unique, what has been the catalyst of past successes, your abilities and talents
- Your accomplishments – your successes and more so the skills you learned, the moments where you pushed yourself beyond the comfort zone

In addition, mindfulness, visualization, imagery, and meditation are helpful and improve our overall wellbeing. Even if you just go for a walk in nature and appreciate the amazingness of nature – flowers, trees, sky, sun, clouds - and yourself, you will feel incredible and your heart will too.

Author's Bio: 

Ulrike Berzau, Executive Coach & Consultant, works with individuals, teams and organization to achieve exceptional results in life and business. With extensive experience as healthcare executive, she is known for providing highly respected insights and creative solutions to secure continuous advancement and excellence. Ulrike has an unwavering passion for igniting the talent and brilliance in others and her international and multicultural experiences allow her to relate to a diverse audience. Her ambitious, yet well balanced, positive and inspiring mindset is the catalyst of her own success and assures the success of clients, staff and organizations.

Ulrike is the co-author of the International Best-Seller Imagine a Healthy You and an inspirational speaker. She is certified as Thinking into Results Consultant, Passion Test Facilitator, ASAP Engagement Consultant and Achieve Today Coach, and holds a Master’s Degree in Management, a Master’s Degree in Health Science, Physical Therapy, and is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.