One cannot receive if one is holding onto something else. Recognize the thing that is not wanted, and recognize the thing that is wanted. It is not just an intellectual adjustment, because an intellectual evaluation that has been made is not enough.
Letting it go to the heart level has something to do with being introspective or asking ourselves, "What is it that I really want?" "Do I really want this material situation that I am holding onto so tightly that it is preventing me from receiving?" "Do I really want that?" "Deep down inside is that what I really want?" That soul-searching kind of inquisitiveness is necessary. And, then the other side also - "What is it that I have been given?" "Do I really understand that?" Probably not - because if we did, we would not continue to hold onto this thing that is causing us pain and suffering.
In connection with the duty of a disciple or a student, Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura describes an exercise of very carefully assessing from different angles of vision, making the effort to think, "What is it that I have been given?" The very act of doing that allows the heart to open. When the heart opens, that exercise becomes empowered. It is not just a material intelligence exercise, but it becomes a spiritual experience of recognizing, of feeling, "What is it that I have been given?" Enter into the mystery of "What is it that I have been given?" Otherwise, it is just like a selfish child receiving so many things, not even acknowledging what has been given, and just going on from one need to another. There is no acknowledgment of what it is that has been given, what to speak of thinking about the person who has given it, and the spirit with which the person has given it.
Love does not enter into one's heart if everything just stays on the material platform. So, one can go to the heart level according to Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura's instruction. Then magic starts to happen- the heart opens up, realization comes, then the feelings connected to that realization comes, and then the source becomes a very heart-moving object of appreciation and affection. When that channel is open, that compels behaviors. It is more compelling than obedience. Love is more compelling than obedience, although it may start with obedience.
From a lecture by HH Romapada Swami on ‘Srimad Bhagavatam 1.5.25-26’, California, June 2009