Your key to success in 2016 starts and stops in the space between your ears.
This time of year many of us have our minds on change. Changing out of the old and into the new.
Your mind may be focused on New Years Resolutions for yourself or you’re just aware of this global change-focused energy abounding.
The stats don’t lie, only eight percent of all resolutions are successful. In North America almost 43 percent of the population usually make some kind of resolution.
It’s nuts. We live in a culture and mindset of which many people seem to embrace year in and year out but so few actually have any sort of system or process in place to ensure they succeed.
In my case since 2009 I’ve strayed from the norm (big surprise there). I’ve looked at the annual resolution process a bit differently.
Click HERE to see my 2016 The 365 Effect plan
It’s a plan.
It’s a process.
It’s a blueprint for success.
If you clicked on the link above you’ll see it’s concise, direct and straightforward. I feel it’s best to not beat around the bush when setting out what I intend to honor for the entire 2106 year.
This planning or “crafting” as I call it, usually takes up the month of December. I need to refine my effect for the upcoming year. It’s make up, structure and foundational pieces need time to percolate within my consciousness. Over time the plan takes shape and then and only then am I prepared to meet the New Year head on.
But wait …
What about this Monkey Mind business?
Space Between Your Ears
Buddha described the human mind as a space filled with dancing, screaming and crazed monkeys jumping around. He taught his students the art of meditation as a way of quieting these monkeys.
We all know that what you resist, persists but with meditation Buddha believed his students could temper the effect of the monkeys running rampant in their minds.
I believe in meditation.
I don’t know if I’m any good at it because I can never seem to fully quiet my monkeys, but I do know that I go into it with full intentions every time I assume the position.
These damn monkeys however are crafty little sons-of-guns.
They seem to capitalize on the most important decisions we’re currently faced with. For those of us in the 2016 “change-focused” mindset these monkeys are working overtime.
Whether your resolution are about:
Or whatever other topic you’ve most wanted to change about yourself, these monkeys are doing everything they can to cause chaos in your mind and body.
Meditation can help but what else can you do?
Throw them a peanut!
What I mean by this is take the time to engage that monkey and slow it down a bit. Say you’re trying to improve the relationship with your lover and the monkey’s getting in the way, feed it a peanut. Talk with it.
Now, I don’t want you to think I’m a nutcase… because If you’re imagining me stopping everything and speaking aloud to the “relationship monkey” wreaking havoc in my mind that’s not what I’m saying… well not quite.
Sometimes however, the best thing you can do is talk it out with the monkey in your head.
“OK relationship monkey, why is it you’re getting so excited up there when I start thinking of all the things I’m going to have to sacrifice to make this partnership stronger?”
“What is the worst thing that can happen if I actually tell my partner my true feelings?”
“I really don’t treat my partner as well as they treat me?”
All of these thoughts get that relationship monkey HOPPING inside your head. Its like “crack” for the presumptuous primates.
IT’S NOT WRONG!
It’s actually the most healthful thing you can do. Hash it out with the monkey and chances are it will quiet down. Once you’ve fed it with your wisdom and spoken your truth it has no power left. Sure it might hop around a while longer while you form a strategy and the employ the tactics necessary to work through your commitments but the key is you have the power and not it.
Find a few minutes today – lets say just five. Go somewhere quiet. This could be the office washroom toilet stall, a quiet table in a coffee shop, the park, your comfy chair at home, the yoga mat before the class starts. WHEREVER.
Sit quietly and focus in your mind on the goal/resolution/problem that is currently most “active” for you. Once the thought takes shape in your head, identify which monkey is most active. Is it the Fear Monkey, the Insecure Monkey, the Anger Monkey, the Shame Monkey, etc.
Laser focus on that monkey and feed it a peanut.
Slow it down.
It never gets easy, shoulder the load and move on. If you desire to take your levels of success to new heights in 2016 then take control of your Monkey Mind.
Slowing down and finding quiet time to acknowledge, question and deal with the thoughts in your head is almost the entire battle for most of the Type A people I know and work with.
A mind that’s filled with non-stop stimulation will just bounce and bounce and bounce until it hits a wall (that’s the point by the way where the monkeys scramble up on top of the wall and throw their shit at you).
Succeeding is up to you. No one else.
Take charge of that space between your ears and tame that monkey mind.
If you liked this article click HERE and learn how to deal with those nasty situations when the “Shit when it hits the fan” with a technique I call Splatter Control.
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Photo: Flickr/su neko