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A Message From Your Heart, Follow Me!

Article as seen in, BLISS MAGAZINE,

‘Follow your heart’, they say.

There’s a reason this is such a popular phrase however, many people may not truly know why that is. At whatever time this phrase was first uttered, (I have yet to discover the exact origin, please let me know if you ever do!) I doubt they knew just how true this actually was but, they were surely on to something. My personal motto for years has been exactly this old adage of, ‘Follow your heart’. It’s my belief that if we can be still and heart-focused enough, and remain in gratitude of what we already have, that the whispers of our heart direct our life’s path to, ‘unfold as it ought’, as my grandfather likes to say. As fate would have it, I am writing this article for you on the heels of taking my Teacher’s Trainer Certification with the Institute of HeartMath. I’ll happily explain why this strikes me as serendipitous, how I first became addicted to finding heart rocks and shapes along my life’s journey, and how I came to trust and follow these ‘heart whisperings’.

I found my first heart-shaped rock on a small pebble beach, at Michael’s Harbor, Newfoundland, in 2011. I was originally born in Newfoundland so it was very fitting that this was where I was to find my first heart rock. From that point on I used finding heart-shaped rocks and heart shapes as my sign to confirm that I was ‘following the bread crumbs back home’ to my purpose in life, my heart and my art. In the last several years I’ve invested a lot of time and ‘heart’ into exploring and embracing my Newfoundland musical and cultural roots.

It’s easy to dismiss coincidences as just that — seemingly random events that might be related but probably aren’t. Occasionally though, things unfold with such staggering synchronicity that the universe/God is clearly sending a message that our heart sets out to guide us along.

I have become very familiar with how these miraculous synchronicities unfold in my own life. In fact, while researching the book I co-authored with my grandfather, The Heart’s Obsession – An Intimate Biography of Newfoundland Songstress Georgina Stirling (1867-1935) one of these incredible confirmations revealed itself. When I paused to ask myself one day, ‘Am I meant to write this definitive biography on Newfoundland’s renowned nineteenth century opera singer? Who am I to do such a thing?’ As a fellow Newfoundlander and opera singer, I was surely feeling the importance of this task, I was in Georgina’s hometown of Twillingate when this question came to mind. I drove down the narrow dirt road with my mother and two children to her gravesite that faces the ocean. We parked off to the side and approached the double white gates. As I put both hands on the gates to draw them open, I paused and looked down. There in the center where the gate doors meet, was a perfectly heart-shaped rock that fit in the palm of my hand. We all laughed, shaking our heads in disbelief. ‘Only you, Tonia, would this happen for!’, my mom exclaimed. In terms of finding this undeniable sign in my specific case, she was spot-on. Since I was meant to pen Georgina’s story, this sign was surely meant for me.

From that point on, a cascading series of events continued to come together and irrevocably link me to sharing the story of this kindred opera songstress. And what I’ve come to learn on a much bigger scale is just how possible this is for everyone in their own individual lives when it comes to following their own heart’s true path and experience. During the week’s time it took for my Teacher’s Training Certification with the Institute of HeartMath, I became truly presenced to the miraculous power of our human and spiritual hearts from a science-based research point of view. Based on a study that HeartMath and other institutions have done, it’s scientifically proven that our heart can sense and reacts ahead of time what is coming which, then informs the brain and then the body. To this I am reminded, heart first! Our hearts have their own nerve ganglia that’s referred to as the ‘heart brain’ and has an electromagnetic field that radiates at least three to five feet from our body. This is why we can so easily pick up on what kind of energy field people bring to a room or situation – one of love, compassion and gratitude or one of anger, tension, even misery. Our hearts pulse out a rhythmic pattern that reflects our emotions. It all starts with our hearts! If we can be still and heart-centered, through useful techniques, we can learn to balance our emotions, increase our personal ability to rebound and pivot, live in more alignment as our true self, elevate our experiences and have a positive influence those around us. As one of my favorite sayings goes, ‘that’s just the tip of the iceberg!’ I’ve implemented many of HeartMath’s techniques into my own life, and artists that I coach, to strengthen this heart connection and intuition.

I’d love to hear about your personal experiences with following your heart. And if you’d like to learn to bring more of your personal heart’s power to the surface of your own life, I’d be delighted to be part of your journey. I’ll leave you with a famous quote by Steve Jobs. From his 2005 commencement address at Stanford University...

“And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”


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