My resting heart rate.


I don’t know much about things in the medical field, but I do know that when doctors check your resting heart rate, they’re looking for the numbers to be within a certain range. Of course you don’t want your heart rate to be too slow, but you also don’t want it to be too fast! I was thinking about this the other day when I was sitting at the doctor’s office – and then I began asking myself, What is my emotional resting heart rate? What direction do my thoughts take when I have a quiet moment? And much like the heart rate that is checked at a clinic, is it within a healthy range?

What is my mental default? Is it gratitude? Joy? Or do my thoughts soon turn into anxiety, grumbling?

I’m in the habit of praying in the morning when I put on my makeup. I pray for emotional steadiness and a grateful spirit. I actually have these prayers written down on a note I’ve taped to the mirror, because I know these are areas I need to constantly work on.

It’s hard to admit truths about ourselves when they are unflattering. We don’t meet people for the first time and say, “Hi, I’m Hannah and I really struggle with worry in my life!” or “I’m really not all that content or grateful.” We like to keep those nooks and crannies of ourselves tucked away, safe from potential judgment or others’ eye rolls. We want to portray ourselves well – which is partly a good thing! But after these past couple weeks of heart-searching, I’ve come to realize that my resting emotional heart rate isn’t always in the healthy range. It’s often not an admirable one.


My heart often dons Joy for just a fleeting moment – only to replace that with worry before long. And another ugly thought pattern rears its head alongside worry: discontentment. Can you believe it? I have so much to be grateful for, yet contentment so often seems out of reach!

Why is this? I’ve come to believe that feelings of worry and discontent float to the surface of my thoughts when I am NOT keeping my eyes on Jesus. Often times, so much of my emotional energy throughout the day is spent staring my problems and my anxieties right in the face, pushing my faith to my peripheral vision. When I focus so much on my worries, I forget to continually reaffirm my trust in a God that is greater than me.

The joyous reciprocal is this: a day spent with my focus, my thoughts, and my eyes trained on my Savior. Because that is when my problems fade into peripheral view, and that is when my heart is in a right place – a place where God can use me most effectively.


I detest the person I become when I allow myself to be consumed by anxiety or discontent. And my husband, bless his heart, probably isn’t a fan of that person either 🙂 But luckily, that person isn’t who I really am and isn’t who I was created to be. It’s a skewed picture of a doubting-Hannah who is watching the waves swirl around her ankles, instead of reaching up and grasping the warm hand of her God.

My word of the year this year is actually CONTENT (more about that here), although it just may have to be the word of the decade! Because I know that this is a journey – a struggle for me in my human nature and human thought patterns, to daily – hourly – recommit my thoughts to the Lord. But oh, the life of truly living for Christ. I want my resting heart rate to reflect a humble spirit of continual, joyful trust in Him.

Where would you say your “resting heart rate” is at? Do you struggle with the same things I do? How do you keep your eyes trained on Christ?



  1. I love this. “Emotional resting heart rate” — that’s a really good way of putting it. And definitely worth checking all the time. Thanks!

  2. “I’m in the habit of praying in the morning when I put on my makeup. I pray for emotional steadiness and a grateful spirit. I actually have these prayers written down on a note I’ve taped to the mirror, because I know these are areas I need to constantly work on.”

    I like this, and your overall point of this post. Our default thinking, perspective, etc. I am inspired, and agree with what you said about writing those prayers down and putting them up so you can actively, intentionally pray.

    Enjoyed reading your heart, thanks for sharing. 🙂

    1. Aw, thank you so much, Chelsea! i’m glad it resonated with you! Yes, posting the prayers has really helped me to intentionally pray! 🙂

  3. I love this post! This is a great thing to think about and reflect on. I also loved reading that you pray in the morning as you get ready. (And put the notes on your mirror–I’ve thought about doing that too.) I listen to the Bible in the morning as I get ready and I think that always goes a long way in putting me in the right frame of mind for the day.

    1. Thanks, Crystal! I love your idea of listening to the Bible in the morning – that would be a great way to infuse more Scripture into my daily life! 🙂

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