How to Quiet the Monkey Mind
You can't stop thinking by thinking about it...
One of the biggest challenges to keeping your energy vibrating at a high level and in alignment with the Universe is the incessant chatter of your mind. This non-stop thinking is often referred to as “monkey mind,” and it’s completely normal in today’s harried world. Human nature has evolved so the mind is constantly in action, always thinking about what needs to be done, what might happen, what has happened, and on and on and on…
However normal this may be, it’s definitely an obstacle to tuning into Life Force Energy, and to living a calm, serene life that’s free of worry and anxiety. So one of the most important tasks in optimizing your personal energy for higher vibration, and all the good things this brings with it, is learning how to calm this monkey mind.
What not to do
People often try to force the mind to be calm, using sheer willpower to try and quiet it down. Unfortunately this is a futile endeavor, for the more you wrestle with your mind the more it jumps and squirms and sneaks around your effort. And it makes sense, because thinking about calming your mind is, well, thinking. And that’s what you’re trying NOT to do.
Do this instead
A super effective technique for quieting your mind is one that’s been used for centuries in many spiritual practices, especially those involving meditation. The technique is called being a witness – basically just stepping back and observing what’s happening in your mind, but not getting involved in it. It’s also known as detached awareness, or watching without attachment.
Here’s how it works:
- Just watch. Instead of trying to stop your rambling thoughts, simply watch them for a while. Pay attention to what comes into your mind but don’t worry about trying to control or prevent anything.
- Don’t “get involved” in what you’re witnessing. That means not letting the content of your thoughts trigger any emotions or actions. You’re just a neutral observer watching from a distance.
- Keep noticing. As you watch, you’ll start to realize how silly most of what comes into your mind is. That’s one of the keys to success – the dawning realization that the incessant stream of thoughts are mostly trivial and meaningless.
- Remember: most of it's repetitive neurological junk. It helps to remind yourself that everything that happens in your mind is nothing but a bunch of brain cells firing electrical impulses back and forth. There’s no reality to your thoughts and emotions, they’re just tiny electric sparks flitting around your brain – like sandcastles in the sky that don’t really exist.
- Bring to mind something pleasant. Once you’re tired of watching all the noise, let your mind drift off to something calming and observe that instead. It could be walking on the beach, embracing your lover, hovering in the clouds and looking down at our beautiful planet. Just visualize something relaxing and beautiful and hold it in your mind for a minute…
And now your monkey mind is taking a nap. Whew!
When you start this practice it’s best to do it with your eyes closed. But once you get the hang of it you can do it while walking, driving, doing dishes, etc. And you can try our other visualization techniques to add even more power to the practice. (Be sure to sign up for our Guru Tips email series if you haven’t seen those yet.)
And by the way, doing this witnessing practice with your eyes closed is a common tool of meditation. So if you can master this you’re on your way to being a meditator, which is the absolute best way to keep your energy vibrating at a high level and in alignment with the Universe…
Till next time,
Chief Energy Guru