Mindfulness and the Year of the Monkey

monkey

Kung hei fat choy! The Chinese New Year is looming and 2016 is the Year of the Monkey. It is a Yang Fire year so there will be plenty of spark, action and excitement around.

This cheeky animal is very intelligent, bursting with exuberance and strong minded. The term a monkey mind is often used by meditation teachers and students to describe an active, energetic mind that jumps from thought to thought.

We all have busy minds, thoughts continually come and go, and it is normal and natural. We give these thoughts life by holding onto them, usually thoughts from the past and the if onlys or thoughts planning for the future by predicting conversations and outcomes. It’s impossible to do these things, we can’t change the past and we can’t foretell the future.

Given that there will be a lot of unfettered energy around in 2016 now is the time to rethink fitness regimes, both physical and mental. Good ways to find a balance this year will be with regular yoga, swimming, dance, martial arts, tai chi and walking. Make adjustments to your diet if necessary, not too heavy or too light, eat mindfully and really enjoy your food. In fact practicing some informal mindfulness by being in the moment is the perfect stabilizer to a monkey mind that won’t settle for long on one thing.

There couldn’t be a better time to start a formal meditation practice, learn to calm and still your very busy mind with focused concentration, 15 mins twice a day if possible and your year ahead will be calm, balanced and fun.

Five Famous Monkeys

Elizabeth Taylor

Hugh Jackman

George Lucas

Celine Dion

Salvatore Allende

 

Image courtesy BRIAN MANN  https://images.unsplash.com/photo-1430462773665-fd261133b47f?

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