Why Is It So Hard to Follow Your Heart?

Why is it so hard to follow your heart?This post is a part of the Follow Your Heart series.

Overwhelm.

Fear.

Panic.

Those are the feelings I ran into when I first started following my heart.

I thought that if I could only find my passion, or tap into my inner wisdom, everything would be fine.

But life doesn’t work that way.

I discovered that in order to live the life I wanted, I had to let go of the baggage I had. And letting go meant facing my deepest fears and insecurities.

The heart-based path is not an easy one, but you’re reading this for a reason. Something is nudging you to take the next step.

So let’s take the next step right now.

Why Is It So Hard to Follow Your Heart?

There are several reasons why it’s so hard to follow your heart, but here are a few of the biggest stumbling blocks:

  • Conditioning. When you start following your heart, you go against your “programming.” You’ve been told you to go to school, get a job, and follow the rules. You’ve been told that you can’t trust yourself. You’ve been told that to get what you want in life, you have to push, force, and manipulate. You have to strive and struggle. The truth? You don’t.
  • Beliefs. The conditioning leads to beliefs. These beliefs are the thoughts that come up when you begin listening to your heart. They’re things like: “I’m not good enough,” “If I follow my joy, I’ll starve,” or “People will laugh at me if I do this.” These beliefs feel rock-solid, but they are full of air. These are not your thoughts, but thoughts you’ve picked up from other people as you’ve grown up. It’s not anyone’s fault, because this programming has been passed from generation to generation.
  • Expectations. You also have expectations of what it’s supposed to look like to follow your heart. Do you think it’ll be a walk in the park? Most people do. They believe that there will be no challenges in their life if they follow their joy, and more often than not, the exact opposite is true, because in order to level up in life, you have to let go of what’s no longer needed, which means letting go of conditioning, beliefs, and fear.
  • Fear. Last but not least, fear makes this hard. But not the feeling that you associate with fear, but the story you weave around it. You see, when we break down fear, it’s a feeling. That feeling may be uncomfortable, but it’s not a problem until you start telling yourself a story of why you feel that way, or why you’re not good enough. When you believe that story, you start trying to fix it, and then you’re caught in the illusion.

6 Practical Tips on Making Things Easier

I wish there was a magic formula I could give you, but there isn’t.

You have to find your own path, and you have to face your inner demons all by yourself. It may sound scary, but once you do it, you realize that it isn’t.

That being said, I do have a few tips you can try it out:

  1. Stop trying to figure it out. You don’t have to try and figure out where your life is going, or even what your passion is. You can start living a happier life right now by tapping into your heart and by following your joy.
  2. Take tiny steps. You don’t have to quit your job or do anything radical. You can start following your heart in tiny, doable steps. Start by moving your awareness from your head to your heart. And listen. That’s how you start.
  3. Do your best. Don’t worry about transforming your life and getting rid of all your problems. One of the reasons you’re not happier is because you think something has to change. The only thing that has to change is your attitude. You can start expanding the joy that is already in your life. Do your best and enjoy what you have.
  4. Feel your emotions. Whenever you feel fear, uncertainty, or even panic, it’s an opportunity to train. Most people run away from their emotions, but it doesn’t work. When fear comes up, sit with it, and feel it fully. Start with small anxieties. The more you do this, the more it will ripple out into the rest of your life.
  5. Breathe. Remember to breathe. I like to meditate. It helps me connect to my heart and stay in the present moment. And above all, it helps me calm down when I get too caught up in the drama of life, and in my imaginary stories.
  6. Connect to reality. No one is free from suffering. Even the most successful people in the world have fears, worries and insecurities. They may have all the money, success and fame in the world, but there’s always something lacking. And they, like everyone else, chase that one thing hoping that it will make everything okay, but it never does, because happiness comes from the inside.

What Not to Do

Don’t rush things. If you’re feeling like a storm of anxiety is taking you over, don’t try to get rid of it.

The more you resist your own feelings, the more you will suffer. We can’t change what is, yet we wish that it would be different. This is what makes following your heart so hard.

What if, just or today, you stopped trying so hard?

Stop trying to figure everything out. Stop trying to control the outcome. Stop trying to achieve more and be more.

This doesn’t mean you sit on the couch watching movies. It means you stop trying to meddle in things that you cannot control.

It means you center yourself in the present moment and listen to your heart.

You do what you can with what you have. That’s all you have to do. That’s all you can ever do.

The Bottom Line

What makes following your heart difficult is your resistance to life. It’s not inherently hard.

The struggle isn’t necessarily a bad thing, because it helps you let go of the baggage you’ve been carrying all this time.

The good news is that you don’t have to try and get rid of this baggage. You don’t have to get rid of your “problems.”

Are you noticing how much lighter you feel after having read this article? That’s because you’ve relaxed a bit and you’re not trying to control everything.

And you see, you don’t have to have an iron grip on life. The world won’t end if you stop trying to figure everything out.

Or it might, but so what?

Let go, listen to your heart, and enjoy yourself, just for today.

If you can’t do it for a day, then what about 5 seconds?

The Follow Your Heart Book is Out Now

Follow Your Heart Book

Ready to live a happier. more fulfilling life? Click the cover above to learn more.

I know it can be confusing to follow your heart, which is why I wrote a book, and why I sliced the book into 21 different days.

Each chapter comes with a lesson and three action steps that you can implement.

In a way, it’s a step-by-step guide to connecting and living through your heart.

You could almost say that it’s the closest you’ll get to a “magic formula,” but let’s not go that far ;)

You can learn more about how to get the book here.

Get the FREE Ebook and Discover:

  • How to turn your passion into a lifestyle business
  • The two ways to find your profitable passion
  • The biggest mistake you can make (and how to avoid it)
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Comments

  1. Thanks for this post. It really resonated with me. Sounds like you’re a follower of Bob Proctor because the whole programming statement jumped out to me and made me think about when Bob talks about paradigms and how it controls us. I’m still working through that in my own life. But I have found that being aware of it really helps your conquer and control it.

    I liked what you said about not trying to figure everything out. That’s a hard one for me. I’ve always pretty much what I’ve wanted to do and how I’ll do it. But sometimes I don’t and it drives me crazy. But I’m learning to take a step back and not force the situation and just wait. And once a path or opportunity is revealed I pounce then. Seems to get better results that way.

    So thanks for the great advice and reminders!

  2. Hi Henri
    I am having a really difficult time following my passion. With life and all its stresses, I think I have lost my passion and dont know how to find it back. Feeling down and without the ability to even write can really be frustrating. I think I need to clear my mind and remove all the things that are holding me back but its hard to know where or how to start. I remember I used to be able to write about anything but over the last couple of months I just cant seem to get anything out.

    I am sure the inspiration I have received from your blog will help me get back on track and discover my true passion. I hope it is still there.

    Ingrid

  3. Hi Henri,

    You are so right about the fact that fear is only a feeling.
    When I feel that feeling in the pit of my stomach, instead of automatically thinking “I’m scared” and freaking out I try to remember that the feeling of excitement feels an awful lot like the “fear feeling”.
    Then I tell myself the story that I am excited about the new possibility, adventure, whatever it is instead of afraid.
    It works wonders for me :)

  4. This is great advice for following your heart. I also feel a big part of following your heart is to not let others try and persuade you to not follow it, stand up for your heart.

  5. Tiny steps! This is so crucial. If I’d had to take all the steps that got me here at one time I…well, I wouldn’t be where I am now!

  6. Thank you so much for this. It was exactly what I needed to read this morning to start my day with more positivity!

  7. This was an incredibly supportive article! Thank you for sharing your wisdom and experience here.

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