Taming the Monkey Mind šŸ™µ Creating Boundaries

Buddha described the human mind as being so busy and overwhelmed. It was as if it had monkeys in it, that continued to jump from branch to branch, chattering and screaming. This is the basis for the phrase monkey mind. The monkey mind is exhausting but very common.

Since the lockdown in 2020 our world has shifted. We have an increased reliance on screens as our main source of connection to the outside world. It's estimated that overal digital usage increased by 5 hour per day since 2020. For heavy users, up to 17.5 hours per day. This has huge effects on our mind by increasing obsessive, compulsive and excessive behaviour which exacerbates the monkey mind (Source -Ministry of human resource development 2020)

The fact is, the screen is not going anywhere. Apples profits have risen from 65 billion in 2010 to 365.8 billion in 2021.

Itā€™s up to us to create the boundaries we need, and find ways to focus the busy mind. As our lives get busier and stresses and stimulation increase, we have to take action and create healthy ways to cope and look after our mind.

10 Tips To Calm the Monkey Mind!

1. Become more aware of your breath, if you find your mind wandering bring your attention back to your breath. Try box breathing a few times a day. Inahle for 4 through the nose , hold the breath for the count of 4, exhale for the count of 4 through the mouth. This has a very calming effect on the mind and take us into our rest and relax state.

2. Take ownership of your phone

  1. Turn off notifications.

  2. Set limits on your phone this way you can decide how much time you spend on apps.

  3. Introduce some rules around your phone. I turn my phone off at 9 and then on at 9, see what works for you.

3. Start to journal everyday. This really helps you get more clarity. Write whatever is in your head, it does not need to make sense just get it out of you head onto paper. For some people the morning works well, others prefer it at night to empty the brain.

4. Start to say NO more. Do no respond to everyone right away. This can be hard as we are so conditioned to be polite and respond, but actually this creates more noise in the brain. Set aside time when you will respond to people or check emails or social media at specific time everyday.

5. Yoga is a fab way to calm the mind. If you have a very active mind then often a more active class can help. When I first came to yoga, I needed to really exhaust my body to be able switch off my mind and relax. Yin and restorative yoga are great to calm the mind, so try out a few different styles and teachers, see what works for you.

6. Try Meditation and explore what type resonates with you. Meditation can give you a sense of calm, peace and balance that can benefit both your emotional well-being and your overall health. And these benefits don't end when your meditation session ends. I love yoga nidra before bed to calm my mind.

7. Cold swimming or showering is great to just stop you thinking. Immersing your body in cold water has an immediate effect to just stop the monkey mind in its tracks. It feels like its cleansing the brain washing away the debris it brings clarity to your thoughts. It is also scientifically proven to help anxiety and depression.

8. Inhaling essential oils is a massive help as they directly impact our emotions and our brain. They have the ability to almost instantly clear the mind. The citrus oils uplift, lemon is the oil of focus, peppermint is great for a boost in energy and lavender helps us to calm the busy mind.

9. Go for walks in nature without your phone, if you can get to the forest even better! maybe get your feet in the earth. This is known as forest bathing and helps to clear the mind reduce stress and blood pressure and also balance our hormones too.

10. Chanting a mantra can also help to calm and focus the mind, you could chant Om to calm the mind or you could create your own one. My mind is clear and focused, I am gratefu, I am creating boundaries for myself to live positively.

In summary, these are just some of the many tools that we can use to support ourselves.

We have to take control back and look at ways to tame that pesky monkey. By creating some boundaries and carving out the time and space you need you can find the balance that you need to stay healthy and calm.

Thankyou for reading my blog, please leave a comment as it's lovely to hear what you think. If you would like to chat yoga or oils please reach out to me.

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