I am a Reiki practitioner.  The Reiki Master who trained me always talked about the “Monkey Mind” that gets in the way during meditation or prep for a treatment, whether your own or for someone else.  It gets in the way – you know, puts thoughts into your head that can easily wait for another time – doing everything it can to hinder and deter you from accomplishing your task, which is to clear the mind and bring peace and positive energy into focus.

Monkey Mind can hinder much more than just your meditation!  I read a lot about getting past the mental challenges during runs and other exercise.  You can find these articles everywhere – Runner’s World, Cool Running, etc.  They make it sound so easy to get past!  Not for me!  I’m not a long distance runner, at least, not yet!  My longest run so far has been 7.8 miles.  I’m usually ready to be done at mile number 4!  I manage to push through sometimes, but admittedly, more often than not, even though I KNOW I can go farther, I talk myself into a “short” walk break.  It’s so much easier to just stop.

I try to think about and imagine the end, that last mile, half mile, quarter mile – “see my house” in order to keep going.  Uh-uh, doesn’t work, not for me anyway.  Visualization is difficult for me, even during meditation.  It takes time for me to actually “see” the images.  I mostly feel them.  Try doing that while running and trying to keep those legs pumping and the lungs breathing.  My Monkey Mind is so negative!  It hangs around so much, especially when I run, that I should call it “he” and give him a name!  Hm, what would be an appropriate name for a Monkey Mind that is negative, gets in the way all the time, doesn’t do anything productive and just wants me to fail?  Suggestions?  I guess we’ll leave that one to be pondered for a while.

So, the conclusion here is that the jury is still out.  There is no decision from the judges yet as to who will win this battle in the ring, me or Monkey Mind.  Guess we’ll have to wait for the sequel!

Ring the bell for Round 2!