Howard Martin is co-author of The HeartMath Solution and one of the original leaders who assisted Doc Childre in founding HeartMath. He’s been with HeartMath’s global training and consulting team since its founding in 1991.
During his career with HeartMath, Howard became instrumental in developing the business and in delivering the initiative’s dynamic, practical programs to thousands of worldwide participants. His universal appeal has led him to facilitate training programs and to make keynote presentations for Fortune 100 companies, school systems, government agencies, the U.S. military, ecumenical organizations and publicly promoted events through 50 cities on four continents.
In 2000 Howard authored The Heartmath Method, which is an audio-learning program published by Nightingale Conant. He has produced two awared-winning musical recordings including Doc Childre’s Heart Zones that spent 50 consecutive weeks on the Billboard charts.
Howard Martin: …that’s what HeartMath is. It’s a system, really of tools, methods and technology all interdependent with science based on care, based on the intelligence of the heart designed to help empower people through this changing times.
Ric Thompson: Great! So how does this apply to people who are trying to achieve their intentions?
Howard Martin: Ahh, Intention! Yes, it implies in a lot of ways, I think that this is obviously the topic of discussion with anyone I’m very interested in, think of a heart and the intelligence of the heart has lot to do with their ability to determine one intention should be and to give us sustaining power we need to manifest that intention.
But perhaps, they should back up a little bit and talk about this term heart intelligence which may or may not be familiar with everyone who is listening today. For me, my life’s work has been about an unfolding of heart. It started a long time ago, four years ago. As a young man interested in personal growth and I realized that for me life had to be about continuous growth, that’s what it had to be about, no matter what else I did, it had to be about growing, learning and growing, changing, becoming better. And it also had to be about service to others.
So there are a lot of intentions, in all of that, the things that I’ve just said, that a life of continuous growth, a life that was about service to others. A whole lot of things that were involved in that would be related to intention. But I also found along the way, the heart had a lot to do with that. And when I think about what heart means to me now, it’s a lot of things.
We know that the physical heart is an amazing part of our physiology and the most efficient pump that’s ever been conceived of. And if we think of it that way, it’s a cardio vascular organ but we know through the research that we’ve done here at HeartMath and researches that had been undertaken around the world, the heart is more than that even in the physical level. It’s actually processing center in our bodies. It sends powerful commands to the brain and to rest of the body. Brain functions, for example is critically dependent upon the signals that come from the heart. So we know that the heart even in the physical level is more than just a blood pump.
When you think about some of the emotions that we enjoy the most, that mean the most to us, things like compassion, care, appreciation, love- those kind of emotions it’s clearly seeing that heart is often is associated with those emotions. So there’s an emotional heart. It’s this place inside of us where we really feel the most meaningful emotions that we ever experienced in life. That has an awful lot to do with heart as well.
Taken further, I mean think there’s an intuitive or spiritual heart. And we’ve done research in this area. And it’s the connection that we have to something larger than ourselves that place inside of us that moves us beyond our limitations. It takes us out of our mediocrity. It allows us to do things that we’ve often can’t or usually can’t. This has a lot to do with intention when you think about that.
And so it’s all of that, and when I take it back down to practical understanding of it, it’s really my most reliable guide to making decisions about things big and small. It provides a certain type of discrimination that’s essential especially when I’m approaching things from an intentionality perspective. And at the end of the day, when I lay my head down the pillow at night to go to sleep, I really feel my heart is my own best friend. That’s the part of me that offers me security, it offers me peace, and it offers me comfort. And that’s what heart has become to me in my life.
So again, my life’s work has been about unfolding of heart in the name of continuous growth and service to others. So I know that was long introduction and prelude to your question but I thought we better characterize heart and intelligence before we went too far.
Ric Thompson: Yeah, I think so. It’s fantastic! Now you also talked about emotions and all that linked to the heart. Do you mind kind of digging deeper for us too?
Howard Martin: Yes, sure I’ll be glad to. Well emotion is interesting. Emotion is to me a misunderstood part of who we are. People fear their emotions. They don’t want to look their emotions. There’s a stigma to emotions. It’s sort of imprinted in us in this sociable context where we approach life.
But to me, once we get passed that, pass those presets about what emotion is, I see it very differently. I see it as a great gift..
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