Tag Archives: #monkeymind

Don’t Take It Personally

How many times in your life have you heard – ‘Don’t take it too personally.’ Have you ever wondered what it means?

From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English to take something personally is to get upset by the things other people say or do because you think that their remarks or behaviour are directed at you in particular. For example, Don’t take it personally; she’s rude to everyone.

The common belief here is that it is something that is caused by other people. I beg to disagree. Don’t believe me – let’s try the following example.

Let’s say you are walking down the street and almost every other person on the road comes up to you and says, ‘You are limping.’ What would you do? You will disregard and probably say something like, ‘What’s got into everybody? They are all crazy.’

Now, Let’s say you are walking down the street and every other person on the road comes up to you says, ‘You are not a good employer or an employee, or a good husband or some variant of this.’ What would you do?
The chances are that most of would be wondering something like, ‘How did they know?’ or ‘I knew it I shouldn’t have done that thing or this thing?’

Moral of the story is that we take it personally only if we believe there is a grain of truth to it – if not, we think it is a stupid thought. So, only we are responsible for making things personal. Others act as a trigger for what we already know is true inside of us.

Instead of getting upset or annoyed the best course of action is to express gratitude to the other party for helping you know yourself better and work towards coming to peace with it. This is easier said than done because, in these type of scenarios, we are our own worst enemy. We tell ourselves the same thing over and over again. But, when somebody else tells us the same thing we get offended. We have forgotten that we are not that voice or inner mind chatter. We let it guide us wherever it takes. We should separate ourselves from the voice – listen to it and make a logical call on whether it is something I need to work on or is the voice just spouting utter nonsense. We have lost ourselves so much that we believe that the inner voice is who we are. And let’s admit it the voice has very little work except to keep commenting on everything true or false. That’s its reason for existence, and we have done a great job of making it our practice to go along with the voice. No wonder we are so tired all the time.

Imagine following a monkey on a tree – if you followed the monkey everywhere instead of focusing on your destination you would never get to your destination but yet you would feel like you have done a lot of work and chances are you will be exhausted.

Are you at peace with what the truth inside of you?

Silence Is The Key.

I love traveling and with traveling there comes a certain adventure because you never know what happens – delay in flights, missed connections. I was telling somebody that I loved being on planes and in the airport because while I am there, I am nowhere – I have nothing to do, and I am in transit. And since my husband and I have experienced a fair share of airport delays, we are at home in airports.

Once it so happened that I had a trip planned for one of the weekends, but it got canceled due to the weather. And as it was a weekend trip, there was no point in re-scheduling it. And I found myself in this unique situation where I was at home when I was not supposed to be so frankly speaking there was nothing for me to do because I wasn’t supposed to be here. And it was one of the best weekends I ever had because I had nothing to do.

A few years ago the concept of doing nothing would have been unthinkable if not outright terrifying. The idea of silence was not my cup of tea, but recently I have learnt to appreciate the quiet and no doing time. More so after I have progressed on my creative journey. Because silence is a must for things to arise. Silence can be of many types. Sometimes when I am reading an excellent book or watching an excellent movie, my mind takes that as silence because it is not just running around like a mad monkey – some of my best ideas have come right after finishing the video or the magazine.

In today’s world, there is a false sense of urgency – blame it on time, traffic or even media that keeps telling us that if we are not watching the news, we are missing something. Honestly, the world is not going to come to stand still if you just took a day-off. The sun will again rise, the earth will always keep spinning, and your fellow human beings will continue the work. For most of us, there is nothing in life that cannot wait a couple of days.

We can realize this when we stop and see for ourselves that nothing happened when we paused. And for most of us, it is hard to stop – to find that time. So we keep running afraid that if we stop something bad will happen. I still remember my childhood days of doing nothing when a simple walk around the block was one of the most adventurous trips of the day.

There are two sides to any coin. If you are working, then you need time when you are not working. This is true not only if you are in the creative field but also a professional area. All things in life need me time – the car needs maintenance, plants need night time to process the O2, this is why you put your laptop to sleep when you are not working. Why don’t we take a break? Yes, we sleep at night, but that is for the physical body. What about this mind that has been ruminating over things some real some imagined (mostly imagined) all day long?

Meditation is one way to provide some respite to the mind. Creative activities, doing nothing, nature walks are other ways.

What do you do to provide rest to your restless mind?