The website logo reflects the complex relationship between what we think and say, what we experience, and how we ultimately behave in the world around us.
From our birth onwards we try to understand the world we ended up in. In fact, we try to find a place in it through the pursuit of recognition and confirmation. Connecting with other groups of people is a way to make joint agreements about the world in which we live. This way we learn to talk to each other, which words belong to which observations, and which rules we all obey to avoid becoming confused. Your family is the first natural group in which you live. Later on, many others join through school, sports, hobby, work, religion and so on. In the end we get pretty conditioned by all of this during the first 20 to 30 years of our lives.
This entire process mainly takes place in the brain. Of course, there are flavors and feelings involved. However, your world view, being a (limited) reflection of the reality around you, arises in your brain. It’s there where choices are made, information is filtered, and stories are conceived that are acceptable and plausible. To ease the connection with others, your brains simplify things, sometimes take a short cut, and have no trouble distorting the reality to get everything fit nicely. This simplification usually is not a conscious process. You only notice it when the environment tells you something different from what you have in mind.
For me this is the first core of personal development: ignoring your lazy brain, and taking the effort to really, openly and honestly investigate the world around you once again.
The heart symbolizes the feeling, the emotion, the experience that cannot be captured directly in structures and rules. The heart often gives meaning to things. When your brain draws the shapes and lines, your heart provides color and intensity. It is the energy source that drives you. As adults we have learned to color neatly within the lines (to stay with this imagery). That is what your brain can handle. If you look at children or very creative minds, you see that color does not get caught in frames. The interaction of colors tells a completely different story than the forms that lie beneath.
In my hobby, the difference between color and black-and-white photography is incredibly exciting. A color photograph can tell you the story on behalf of the photographer, but you can only fill in your own emotion if the same photo just consists of shapes and shades of gray. And that interpretation is changeable in time and with your situation.
The second core of personal development therefore is creativity, including the courage to freely color your world view.
So it is not that trivial that heart and brain completely agree on how they “see” the world. In order to get out of this stalemate prejudice, judgments and so-called cognitive biases arise: tacit agreements between heart and brain. As long as the world around us doesn’t give a counter reaction to this, we will not take any action. We wind up a bit in a comfort zone. Things should not change too much, because then the old perceptions no longer fit. Yet we are forced to adapt ourselves to an ever faster changing world. Society, values and norms, technology, social (internet driven) behavior and the enormous amount of information that is poured out about us ensure that we have to adjust our worldview regularly. We have to make new choices, shift priorities, enter into other relationships and break old ones. That is what the connecting triangle in the logo indicates: although inextricably linked, there is no fixed and clear connection between heart, brain and reality. Making connections takes labor and requires insight.
Herein lies the third core of personal development: to constantly enter into the learning process with the tools that heart, brain and world offer so that your choices become more meaningful and satisfying.