ATLANTA HEAL NEWSLETTER
Published by the Atlanta Chapter of the Human Ecology Action League (HEAL), Inc.
P.O. Box 28116, Atlanta, GA 30358-0116. www.atlantaheal.org
President: Andrew Heyward, First Vice President, Program Chairman: Sydna Fisher, Second Vice President,
Membership: Joyce Taylor, Secretary: Joyce Taylor,Treasurer: Andrew B, Webmaster: Ian Greenberg, Newsletter: Sydna Fisher
JANUARY 21st MEETING
Our January meeting will be on Sunday the 21st because the room wasn’t available on the 20th. We’ll meet at 1 pm in the Johns Creek While Foods community room for a general sharing session to include books, websites, products, therapies, tests, doctors, food/cooking, enzymes, vitamins and minerals, coping strategies, personal care products, water filtration, pest control, clothes and travel. What has been beneficial over the long term or what have you discovered lately? Please make sure you and anyone you bring are fragrance free and please turn off your cellphone.
THE HEARTMATH SOLUTION
The HeartMath system, which teaches how to balance the mind and emotions by cultivating heart intelligence, was created by Doc Childre, stress researcher, author, and consultant to leaders in business, science, and medicine. The premise of the system is that in order for the mind, emotions, and body to perform at their best, the heart and brain must be in harmony with one another.
When negative emotions throw the nervous system out of balance, heart rhythms appear jagged and disordered. Positive emotions increase order and balance in the nervous system and produce smooth, harmonious heart rhythms. They also reduce stress and enhance the ability to see more clearly, literally and figuratively. Sometimes solutions to problems are right in front of us, but they are blocked from view by old attitudes and negative feelings. In a more balanced state, perceptions of problems or difficult situations often widen enough that new solutions and perspectives emerge. When a person focuses on the heart area and activates feelings such as love, appreciation, or care, heart rhythms shift. This reduces activity of the sympathetic nervous system and the release of stress hormones. Activity of the parasympathetic nervous system increases, relaxing inner systems, reducing the production of stress hormones, and boosting the immune system.
Over the years Doc Childre practiced prayer and meditation for hours at a time. He began to look for ways to ground the practice, to bring insights gained from prayer and meditation into everyday life. He noticed that those who did it most successfully were those with the best emotional management and balance in their lives. He wanted to help people reduce their mental and emotional stress so they could have a stronger sense of well being. His practice along with research into various techniques led to discoveries that eventually evolved into HeartMath. In the book Doc Childre and Howard Martin explain how heart intelligence works, how the heart communicates with the brain, entrainment, and hindrances to managing emotions. Central to the solution are four heart power tools and ten key tools and techniques.
Ten Key Tools And Techniques Used To Activate Heart Intelligence
 Acknowledge your heart intelligence and its importance for making choices. Heart intelligence expresses the concept of the heart as an intelligent system with the power to bring both the emotional and mental systems into balance and coherence. When heart intelligence is engaged, our perspective becomes more flexible, creative, and comprehensive. Heart intelligence is the source of emotional intelligence.
 Reduce stress. Stress is created by an internal environment of irritation, anger, blame, and judgment, and expresses itself as resistance, tension, strain, or frustration, creating an incoherent internal state. When energy is continually channeled into stress pathways there isn’t enough energy left to support regenerative processes that repair damage and defend against disease.
 Accumulate energy assets and decrease energy deficits. Positive thoughts and feelings add energy to our system and are regenerative to the heart. By learning to better observe our thoughts, feelings, and emotional expenditures, we can identify where we are losing or gaining internal energy.
 Activate core heart feelings. Heartmath recognizes all core heart feelings but focuses on four – appreciation, nonjudgment, forgiveness, and care – which the authors say are essential to the unfoldment of other core feelings.
 Manage emotions which act as amplifiers of thoughts, perceptions, and attitudes.
 Care. Caring for yourself and others is an essential ingredient for a rewarding life.
 Actualize what you learn. Do what you know.
The authors recognize that change can be hard because we can get locked into set patterns. The more we repeat an action, emotion, or thought, the more ingrained it becomes. The same can be said for reliving angry or hurtful scenarios and feelings. The last three techniques are tools to stop reinforcing negative emotional patterns in the brain’s neural circuitry and thus manage emotions. The book explains how to use them.
 Freeze-Frame is the quickest and easiest way to engage heart intelligence and bring about a new degree of coherence in our systems. It is useful for making in the moment shifts in perceptions and attitudes. The authors say to work on the small things first and take one thing that really drains you and apply heart intelligence to it.
 Cut-Thru is a technique to manage deeply ingrained emotional issues, restore balance, and eliminate overcare, by cutting through emotional energy drains. It is a means for letting go of personal grudges and the need to wallow in negative feelings. It is also a way to recognize and reprogram subconscious memory paths and change neural architecture. By involving both the heart and the solar plexus, the process aligns the brain in the gut with the brain in the heart.
 Heart Lock-In reinforces the practice of the first two techniques and helps activate a deeper connection to heart feelings and intelligence, strengthening the communication links between the heart and brain. Connecting with the heart and radiating care and love to any part of our body or life is an internal source of regeneration. Core heart feelings may be sent to other people or issues.
Core Heart Feelings
Core heart feelings are aspects of love and are potent power tools. The authors have chosen four – appreciation, nonjudgment, forgiveness, and care. They stress that sincerity is the generator that gives core heart feelings power and their effectiveness is in direct proportion to the degree of sincerity applied.
 Appreciation is easier to generate than some other feelings. Ask your heart to show you something to appreciate about a challenging situation to gain more perspective and to see the wider picture. Cultivate appreciation and acknowledge all the good things in life.
 We need judgment to help us make choices and decisions, but nonjudgment becomes important when we have rigid opinions on issues, places, things, and people that separate us from others, when we are intent on defending our position, or when we experience over attachment or identification with what is wrong. It is also important when it comes to self judgments. Making a mistake and then judging ourselves harshly is like paying compound interest on a bad investment. Becoming more neutral is the first step toward nonjudgment and developing heart based discrimination.
 Forgiveness for the big things takes time. First send love to heal the hurt and pain you feel and then build up heart power and increase your energy reserves by eliminating as many deficits and energy leaks as you can, thereby gaining more power to love and forgive. It’s not whether someone deserves to be forgiven but that forgiveness is the most energy efficient option and the one that will foster health and well-being. Forgiving releases you from the punishment of a self made prison in which you are both the inmate and the jailer. Don’t let villains live rent free in your head.
 The fourth heart power tool is care, also one of the ten key tools. While care is a powerful motivator and can boost the immune system, the authors caution about overcare, a burdensome, draining sense of responsibility accompanied by worrying, anxiety, or insecurity caused by over attachment or identity about issues, attitudes, places, things, ideas, people, job performance, material possessions, pets, and health, past or future. Left unchecked, overcare leads to fear and panic. Forms of mental overcare are projection, thoughts and mental images about the future that may or may not happen, expectations which set us up for disappointment and leads to blame, and comparison, which rises out of our insecurities and frailties and leads to envy and jealousy. Instead of focusing on what we don’t have, it is much more effective to appreciate what we do have. Once we recognize overcare we can use one or more of the ten key tools and techniques.
How The Heart Communicates With The Brain
The heart communicates with the brain and rest of the body in four ways – neurologically, biochemically, biophysically, and energetically.
 Neurological – The heart has its own independent nervous system. The brain in the heart sends messages that affect the activity of the cortex which governs higher thought and reasoning and influences neural activity in the amygdala. Through these communication pathways the heart can modify mental and feeling states.
 Biochemical – In 1983 the heart was formally classified as part of the hormonal system when a powerful new hormone produced and secreted by the atria of the heart was discovered. This hormone regulates blood pressure, body fluid retention, and electrolyte homeostasis. It inhibits the release of stress hormones and affects blood vessels, kidneys, and adrenal glands. The heart also synthesizes and releases dopamine and noradrenaline .
 Biophysical – with every beat the heart generates a blood pressure wave that travels rapidly through the arteries, much faster than the flow of blood. These waves create the pulse and apply pressure to the cells in a rhythmic fashion, causing some of the proteins in the cells to generate an electrical current in response to the squeeze.
 Energetic – The heart’s electromagnetic field is approximately five thousand times greater in strength than the field produced by the brain and is by far the most powerful produced by the body. The heart’s field permeates every cell in the body and radiates 8 to 10 feet around the body as measured by a magnetometer. This electromagnetic field has a profound influence on physiological, mental, and emotional processes.
There are two mindsets or reasons to excuse our emotional indulgences that compromise our effort at emotional management. The first, justification, is the feeling that we have a good reason to be mad or frustrated. Principle, or “It’s the principle of the thing/matter” is the second mindset. Righteous anger creates the same incoherence as any other anger. Any rationalization of negative emotion traps our emotional energy in hurt, blame, disappointment, betrayal, regret, remorse, or guilt.
Even though the authors use the terms positive and negative in the book, they prefer the terms asset and deficit. Asset emotions add coherence and energy to the system and deficit emotions cause incoherence and deplete energy. Another way to think of emotions is whether they are efficient or inefficient, productive or non-productive for our health and quality of life.
Clocks with pendulums will synchronize rhythm with the largest pendulum because the one with the strongest rhythm pulls other pendulums into sync with it. This phenomenon is called entrainment. The heart is the strongest biological oscillator in the human system and can pull the rest of the body’s systems into entrainment with the heart's rhythm. Getting the heart and head in sync increases coherence between the heart and brain. We can’t think clearly when we’re upset because we’re literally incoherent. The challenge today is finding and sustaining coherence in a time of increasing incoherence, chaos, and complexity.
 Jay Holden recommends the book The Invisible Rainbow – A History of Electricity and Life by Arthur Firstenberg. Jay predicts that it will be the Silent Spring of the 21st century.
 When Dr. Ventola spoke in November, he guided us through Freeze-Frame. The steps are are follows.
Recognize the stressful feeling and take a time out. Breathe slowly.
Put your hand on your heart and focus on that area.
Bring to mind something calming and positive and breathe it in through your heart. If you can’t access a positive feeling, a neutral state will work.
Ask your heart what would be the best response to the situation.
 Other books on HeartMath are Transforming Anger, Heart Intelligence, and Transforming Anxiety by Doc Childre and Deborah Razamen
January: Ted Leslie 4th, Jean DeSantis 5th, Bren Ames 7th, Ian Greenberg 13th, Joyce Taylor 14th, Lance Roebuck 18th, Pat Amason 19th, Jenny Arillo 20th, Sara Lowenstein 26th, Peggy Presswood 19th
February: Mary Ann Cullerton 22nd, Marycallie Laxton 23rd, Sydna Fisher 24th
 Joyce Taylor is feeling more like herself and is resuming a normal life in mid January. David Taylor broke a bone in his right foot and hopes to get rid of the boot by the end of the month.
 Congratulations to Rebecca Stuckey who has a xerography work of art in a November-March exhibit in the Whitney Museum in New York. The exhibit explores use of the photocopier as a creative tool.
 Dues for 2018 are $10. Everyone will receive an envelope addressed to our treasurer.
 Your suggestions for speakers would be most welcome.
Thank you to Mark Fisher and Ian Greenberg for their assistance in this newsletter.
This newsletter is meant for information only. It is not meant to diagnose or treat any medical condition and is not a substitute for professional advice.
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