In every relationship, a high level of trust translates into palpable feelings of serenity, excitement, passion and optimism. These feelings typically accompany the beginning of life in a new community, such as starting a new job, falling in love, or bringing a baby into the world. But, as trust is eroded the wonderful feelings that accompany trust dissipate.

Attempting to relate in a sea of distrust is like trying to swim through a stream polluted with more and more debris. Low trust spawns adversarial relationships that must slosh through the muck and mire of defensiveness, cynicism, and indifference. Stalemates, resistance, rebellion, boredom, arguments and power struggles weave a picture that bears little resemblance to the tapestry that existed before trust was worn away.

Focusing on questions such as, “Am I worthy of other’s trust and am I trustworthy with myself?” opens to the relationships for which we truly yearn. But becoming trustworthy does not result from a single act. Only when others are consistently treated respectfully do they come to believe that we are worthy of their trust. Self-trust is built by dependably treating ourselves respectfully.

On a scale of 1-10 where do you think your trustworthiness would be rated by each of the following people: spouse, children, boss, and friends?


What are you doing or what will you be doing to become more trustworthy?

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swanThe heart is not only the universal symbol for love, it also represents our essence, our authentic self. Whole-heartedness pierces the veil of our separateness and allows satisfying connections to others and to the mystery that is beyond humanness.

Quintessential Intelligence (QI) expressed through the heart leads to the two things that create true fulfillment:

  • Treating others and ourselves respectfully
  • Making a positive difference in the lives of others.


What do you like about thinking of your heart as your essence/authentic self and Quintessential Intelligence as your way to finding fulfillment? (For a definition of QI click here.)

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Image: Soul Mates by H. Lee Shapiro


Painting by H. Lee Shapiro

When heart-connected we are fully present and in harmony with the moment. Liberated from anxiety, we are centered, in perfect balance and in the flow. It was from skiing that I began learning about living in the flow.

The first time I experienced the high of skiing in the flow, I knew I wanted more. Skiing off-center happened when fear tightened my body. At those times, my skiing certainly wasn’t awful or wrong. It just meant working harder to keep from falling and not skiing as gracefully and joyfully. My skiing goal became learning how to spend more time in that awesome state of flow, and when I lost it, how to get it back.

It wasn’t much of a stretch to transfer my skiing awareness to my life. Remembering times when I experienced the power and bliss of being heart-connected and in the flow, such as walking amongst the towering redwoods, playing with my dog, and making love, felt great.

Realizing how much time I spent disconnected from my heart and off center, especially when confronting upsetting situations, was a sobering shock. Thus began my commitment to living more in the flow of a beautiful melody that I think of as “A Rhapsody in QI.”


Remember times when you were in the flow and what it felt like. What do you think keeps you from living more of the time in harmony with that blissful state?

For a four minute video using the skiing analogy to illustrate being in the flow of a heart connection Click Here.

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Image: World Cup 1991 Aspen by H. Lee Shapiro