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For Valentines Day: An Open Letter to Your Heart

Dear Hearts:

To and from You – we are grateful

It is You that give us the gratitude we feel . . .

BOTH-ness in LOVE
BOTH-ness in LOVE

For the pull of love’s calling
For the giddy enthusiasm of a new crush
For the awe of our true loves beauty

It is You that inspire us 

To pursue more of these experiences.

To hold them close and dearly
To protect the one you pull us towards

It is Your hunger, which drives
The insatiable thoughts of desire
The images of yesterdays encounter, and
The fantasy of the next, which…

Brings a smile to our lips, a shudder of current in our bodies.
It is You that fuses all of the emotions, thoughts and impulses – to create the delicious virtual reality of LOVE.

Love’s Compel
Don’t you just love that feeling of love!? The pull, the tingle, the open sense of authentic expression towards and with another person! If you have known it, you know what I mean.

And if you have been brave with these feelings, you have also known, what I call, The Forest Gump Moment:

That moment where your mind forgets everything else as your heart compels you towards the object of your affection!

Before you know it, your soaking wet (pun intended?) and there’s no one steering the ship!

Following your Heart

I know, I know, throwing caution to the wind.. throwing our whole self into it … being fully authentic in our love’s pursuits is so AWESOME! . .

Whether it is your lover or your child, when we love deeply, the natural action impulse is to go all in on caring for, comforting, and protecting our loved one from any discomfort we can.

I totally get it! No one loves being in love, and doting, pleasing, expressing more than me! It just feels so right to act on the emotions. . .

Until your ship crashes and no one is there to help you pick up the pieces of you that were sacrificed for your heart.

While the scene in Forest Gump is endearing for his child-like spontaneity, a few too many Forest Gump moments in our love life, can leave our hearts less open to the joy of the jump.

Preserving the Heart that Loves

Every week I hear the words I said to my mother when I was young spill from the narrative of a young person I am working with; “But I hate being fake! I’m not playing those stupid games. I want someone to love me exactly as I am!”

In these moments, I hear my mother’s (ineffective) words run through my head, and instead I say this:

“I too have been hijacked by my heart, believing the emotions, thoughts, and impulses, which feel so true that nothing but good could possibly follow.”


“What I have learned is this:

Sometimes, not acting on our heart’s desire is what our loved one needs:

To have the space,

To absorb, to consider, to reflect, and

To long for us in return.”


Authentic love is a long game, so. . .

The Practice:

Be Mindful of your Heart’s messages:

Hear it’s calling, feel it’s pushing, and honor these experiences of the beauty of the human heart.


Be Willing sometimes, in the service of the heart that serves you so well, to not act on your emotions of love.

PAUSE – And give the object of your love the space to discover you, to take their own Forrest Gump moment.

Being Skillful in Love: Holding Both-ness in Awareness

Being skillful is not ‘fake’ or ‘manipulative’. It is honoring the needs of both, as love cannot continue to thrive in the vacuum of the impulses of just one.

This Valentine’s Day, if you are lucky enough to be pulled into your hearts desire – feel its beat – hear its message – notice its compel

AND still, Wisely

Tether your vessel to an anchor of mindful awareness,

Assess the distance to the dock of your loved one, and

Take note if they are able or willing to jump in with you.


Go for the joy of the jump – the heart’s compel – and the open spans of authentic expression now and for the long run.

If you would like to learn more self-help skills to build your resilience and self-mastery, sign up for the Mindful-Mastery Skills Weekly here. Or follow Dr. Fielding on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram!













For Valentines Day: An Open Letter to Your Heart

Dr. Fielding

Lara Fielding is a licensed Clinical Psychologist, who teaches, supervises, and specializes in the Mindfulness-based Cognitive Behavioral Therapies (CBT). Her private practice is in Los Angeles, where she is also an adjunct professor at Pepperdine University, Graduate School of Education and Psychology, and a Supervisor Psychologist at the UCLA Department of Psychology Clinic. Dr. Fielding teaches clients how to master the auto-pilot tendencies of the mind-body emotional system with mindfulness and self-care skills. As a behavioral psychologist, she works with clients to empower their skillfulness in managing stress and regulating difficult emotions. The skills she teaches are based on her research at UCLA, Harvard, and Peperdine, to incorporate the psycho-physiology of stress, emotion and cognition. Dr. Fielding has exhaustively studied the Mindfulness-Based CBT treatments (DBT, ACT, MBSR, MBCT) and their application for problems with Emotion Dysregulation. From this study, she derived a set of therapist guidelines for evidence-based practice. Dr. Fielding’s work is further informed by her research experience at UCLA and Harvard. Her research there explored the relationship between health behavior and the psycho-physiological effects of stress on cognition and emotion. Dr. Fielding is trained and experienced working with groups and individuals suffering from the effects of traumatic experiences, anxiety, and mood disorders. She has taught hundreds of clients concrete skills to better manage difficult emotions in the face of stressful life situations. With these cognitive and emotional skills in place, clients are guided towards personal values consistent behavioral change, in order to achieve their life goals.

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APA Reference
Fielding, L. (2016). For Valentines Day: An Open Letter to Your Heart. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 31, 2020, from


Last updated: 11 Feb 2016
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