read all the way to the bottom for some pretty pictures
Think Like a Monk By Jay Shetty
If you haven't read or listened to this book I highly recommend. It may change the way you view and perceive life. After spending some time in Thailand myself, I can truly say that the way of life in the Buddhism culture is incredible. Being a monk and what Jay has learnt in his life journey underpins the foundation of this book. Jay shows us how we too can implement a calmer, freer and happier way of life that being a monk promotes, into our daily lives.
SPOT, STOP, SWAP.
when it comes to negative thoughts this concept is about...
- SPOT your thoughts, actions and emotions.
- STOP thinking what you are thinking and realise what doesn't serve you.
- SWAP the negative thoughts with something more positive or that does serve you.
Minimising negative thoughts is very important as recent studies have linked negativity to a decreased hippocampus, which is in the centre of our brain and controls many functions such as; regulating learning, memory, spatial navigation and much more. These studies have seen that with a decreased hippocampus size due to an increase in negativity, these people also experience more sickness and general health issues.
Negativity is literally tied to overall bodily health. So get SPOT, STOP & SWAPPING those negative thoughts!
The idea of Forgiveness.
Forgiveness has been linked to lower blood pressure and cortisol levels (stress). That is why it is important that we forgive and let go of these feelings that are stored in our bodies and in our minds. Jay mentions the idea of transformational forgiveness, which is forgiving without the need for anything in return. An important skill to learn and to work on. When we forgive via transformational forgiveness we release ourselves from the stress and anger that holding onto the pain and anger towards someone or something. This releases more energy to you, and life, once you let go you will feel lighter and happier. But in order to let go you have to create a safe space for yourself, you must forgive yourself in order to forgive others.
Intentions, Values and Life.
Intentions reveal values, take an intention you have and ask yourself why you want that, why do you have this intention. Keep asking yourself this until you get to the root cause.
To Do List:
- A list of items that lead you to become who you are and who you want to be, or what you want.
- These are things you must do to become that person.
- These can be checked off.
To Be List:
- Reminder that achieving your goals with intention lives up to the values of those goals.
- These are the values you want to uphold in your life. It is who you want to be.
- Cannot be checked off.
Confidence, Monks, Ego.
Ego is something we cling to so we can give ourselves confidence via a false perception of who we are. Therefore, we use judgement of ourselves and others, to feed our ego. Next time you want to judge someone, think to yourself, why did you say that, is this actually a reflection of you?
Someone who is self confident and loves themselves inspires respect from others. Monks strive to love everyone and themselves equally. When outside of silence, they only speak when their words will serve a positive place in the space.
Why chant AUM?
A U M each sound embodies a different state. The vibrations from a u m has been shown to increase the vagus nerve. Which basically means that it can decrease inflammation and increase your mood. The vagus nerve links your brain to your digestive system and your organs. Therefore, AUM can help calm one of the brains emotional centres and your bodies functions.
Selfless but why?
"The ignorant work for their own profit. The wise work for the goodness of the world." The highest purpose is to live in service, service is the central role that should play in all of our lives. We are all limited by the pressure and needs of our own work and lives, we want to solve our own issues first. When we are struggling day to day, emotionally, physically and mentally, it is hard to think about being selfless. But selflessness is important, because in being selfless we heal ourselves.
In a monk's life they think they go to the monastery to gain something for themselves. But if their vocation is genuine, they then learn they have not come to the monastery to take, but actually to give.
Studies have found that people who work on improving and helping others lives, were less likely to have anxiety and depression, when compared to those who were focused on themselves. The act of giving activates the pleasure centres of the brain.
Nature is important.
Essentially we are nature, it surrounds us. If you look closely and carefully nature is always serving. For example; Trees live solely for the benefit of others.
Your Future Self.
- Write down everything you are chasing right now.
- Then look at this list and ask yourself where these come from. Is it from you? Or is it from an external force?
- Do you still want to chase what you are currently chasing?
A lot of the mental health, gratitude and parts of the goal setting in the Daily Diary for Success links to this book and this way of life, to promote health, happiness and value in your life.
Hope you enjoyed reading a bit about 'Think like a Monk.' It was a fascinating book and is truly interesting to read and try understand different cultures and ways of life. I personally have implement a few of these life skills into my own life, and can say that it does make a difference.
Anyway, I started learning Post Grad in Psychotherapy this week, so some interesting blogs and possible therapy tips and understanding will be coming your way soon.
enjoy these 2 photos from my time in Thailand.