heart chakra

Open your heart chakra

In the fourth part of a seven-part series, Jenny Baker leads an exploration of the body’s subtle spinning energy wheels, or chakras

Three words: appreciation, gratitude, kindness. These basic values of a yogic lifestyle stem from your heart. Whether that transpires into how you treat other living things or how you treat yourself, having an open heart will positively impact your day-to-day life and give you a sense of fulfillment.

The heart chakra 
Your heart is the most important organ in your body, keeping your whole being alive and well. The life energy within the heart is a very powerful and delicate thing. It’s where we hurt, where we love and where we feel compassion.

The key to unlocking this chakra
If you’ve been feeling sad or irritable lately, it may well be due to the fact that you need to rebalance your heart chakra. Knowing how to open your heart will help you feel more connected to others through acts of kindness, respect and generosity.

Write in a gratitude journal:
Give your emotional side an outlet to express itself by creating a journal for you to remember what it is you’re truly grateful for every day. Set aside some time in your schedule to meditate and write down five things that you’re grateful for.

Spend time in nature:
The heart chakra is represented by the colour green, so immersing yourself in surroundings with this colour can help you tap into the energy of the heart chakra.

Listen to uplifting music: Have you ever been emotionally struck by a song or piece of instrumental music? Maybe it has sent chills down your body or made you feel inexpressibly happy? Sounds and rhythms of various instruments can be both inspiring and uplifting as they result in feelings of euphoria.

Explore heart openers
What better way to unlock your heart chakra than with yoga!

Heart to sky:
Start by standing with your feet hip-width apart. Interlace your fingers behind your back and roll your shoulders backwards while straightening your elbows. You’ll notice a very gentle lift in your chest. As you lift up, press your wrists away from your spine while bringing your head back and slightly extending your neck. Take a deep breath and open your mouth wide to exhale. You’ll feel your heart chakra unlock!

Reverse Plank Pose:
Purvottanasana will lengthen your body and once again balance the energy in your heart chakra. Begin this pose sitting on your mat with your legs extended out in front of you.
Bring your palms by the sides of your hips with your fingertips pointing towards your toes. On your inhale, press gently into your hands and feet and lift your hips upward towards the sky.

Bow Pose:
Dhanurasana stretches the front of your body in addition to the ankles, thighs, abdomen and hip flexors. Lie face down on your mat with the tops of your feet resting on your mat and your palms beside your hips. Bring your feet towards your glutes by bending your knees. Now lift your head, neck and shoulders while you reach for your ankles, heels or toes. Inhale while you kick into your hands. You should feel a deep
expansion of the chest. Stay here until you’re ready to slowly release your belly. By incorporating these exercises into your life, you’ll unlock your heart chakra and return to your most compassionate, caring self.

Jenny Baker is the content marketing specialist for Asheville Yoga Centre (youryoga.com) in the USA and found her passion for health and wellness early on in life. Aside from writing, she enjoys travelling the world, working on her yoga practice and being physically active.

Om Magazine

First published in November 2009, OM Yoga magazine has become the most popular yoga title in the UK. Available from all major supermarkets, independents and newsstands across the UK. Also available on all digital platforms.