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Every one of us has in our lifetime the opportunity to learn and to grow and to be more than we ever imagined we could be. My life’s experiences have proven this to be true!

But like many people, when I was young I was taught that I was here on earth to be the person that the people in my immediate environment, my family, needed me to be.

I learned that I should strive to be the person that the world around me told me I should be. These lessons eventually made me tremendously unhappy.

In desperation, I attempted to heed the advice of unknown others to follow my heart and pursue my own dreams. At first, following this advice was terrifying.

Years of study have taught me why it is so hard for so many people to pursue the lives of their dreams. I have also discovered that understanding a few basic principles about how humans are wired can help anyone to achieve their goals and fulfill their dreams.

1. Your heart is the source of all of your dreams, of all that can make you happy. Your heart draws and connects you to whatever is divine, in yourself, in your life, in the world.

2. To truly hear your heart, you must quiet your mind. When your mind is quiet, the whispering voice of your heart can be heard.

3. Unlike your heart, your brain is first and foremost concerned with your survival, your safety. Some of what your brain knows about survival is prewired, evolutionary.

But much of what your brain knows comes from experience. When you survive an experience, even if that experience makes you miserable, your brain identifies that experience with safety. This is why people make the same mistakes over and over again. Your brain seeks the safety of the familiar.

4. Just because it associates safety with familiarity, your brain is not your enemy. If you have no experience pursuing your hearts’ dreams, then your brain cannot perceive the pursuit of those dreams as safe. Sometimes, your brain might even confuse the pursuit of your dreams with imminent tragedy.

5. Your mind is the mouthpiece for your safety-seeking brain. It will offer judgment and warnings about things that are unfamiliar, turning them into fears.

6. When your brain fears what your heart desires, you will experience stress and anxiety. You may become very angry, bitter, or unhappy.

7. You are not limited by the perceptions of your brain. Anyone can learn to resculpt their brain in a way that will free them to pursue the desires of the heart. This has been shown scientifically to be true.

When you learn how to monitor and adjust the safety-seeking mechanisms in your brain, you will discover the freedom you need to pursue the dreams of your heart. And once you’ve begun realizing those dreams, they will continue to appear, leading you to greater fulfillment and joy than you’ve ever imagined possible.

This has been true for me, and I firmly believe it can be true for you too.

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Elana Peled, Ed.D. is a success coach, author, and certified EFT practitioner who uses the skills she has acquired from her life’s journey to support individuals seeking greater fulfillment in their lives.

Convinced that education offered the key to a better life, Elana was the first person in her family to set her sights on earning a college degree. After facing numerous obstacles, and dropping out of college four different times, today her educational accomplishments include a doctorate in human development and psychology from Harvard Graduate School of Education, two master’s degrees, and a bachelor’s in English Literature from Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

A former college professor, Elana is a perpetual student of human development. She is a graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School’s (NOLS) Outdoor Educator program and has had the privilege of studying in person with many widely known and highly respected yoga and meditation teachers including Gurumayi Chidvilasananda, Donna Fahri, Jack Kornfield, Joanna Macy, and Ram Dass. She has completed a Native American vision quest and most recently she has been a participant in the online courses of neuropsychologist Rick Hanson, author of Buddha’s Brain.

Elana’s greatest strengths lie in empowering others to achieve their goals.

A native of California, today Elana resides in Georgetown, Massachusetts where her favorite activity is spending time with her family. Elana is also involved in her local community and holds an elected position on her local school board.

Elana works with clients by phone or by Skype. Learn more about working with Elana by visiting her website,

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This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Very much enjoyed your article…….new to the sight and click on “heart”….and found your article….thanks…..

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