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5 ways your mind is messing with you

By Andrea Kartika Deierlein

How have the first three weeks of 2020 been treating you?

Last week I read that new year’s resolutions can be also be viewed as an act of self-violence. This makes sense to me. For me, new year’s resolutions have always added pressure and tension.
 
I have learned that real and lasting change takes time and happens gradually. And change is hard. Especially when monkey mind has a say. Monkey mind is a Buddhist term for a restless, uncontrolled mind. It’s the part inside of us that wants to stay in the comfort zone, play it safe (at all costs!) and who is terrified of any change. Sometimes I say that monkey mind feels like a two-year-old with a temper tantrum playing multiple computer games at the same time in your head.

Know that feeling? I thought so.
 
Here are 5 ways that monkey mind can mess with you to “protect” you from change:
 
1) It’s being vague.
“I’ll do xyz when I have time.”

2) It’s making excuses.
“Oh, I’m too busy for xyz.”
 
3) It’s being defensive.
“What do you mean I need xyz?”
4) It takes things personally.
“Why can’t I do/be xyz?”
 
5) It makes comparisons.
“Why is this better than xyz?”
 
But no worries. Monkey mind can be tamed. Mindfulness practices and techniques, such as meditation and Reiki, are great ways to learn to be present and become aware of what is happening. Starting on March 2, 7:00-8:00 p.m., I’ll lead a Mindfulness for All workshop at the White Plains Public Library to help us all be more mindful and present. And if you’d like to explore some easy-to-follow meditation techniques, join me on Wednesday, February 5, 12:15-1:00 p.m., for a lunchtime meditation, also at the White Plains Library.
 
Here’s to being mindful!

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