The Monkey Mind – now what is that and what does that have to do with Mindfulness in Pregnancy? Keep reading below and check out our first Mindfulness in Pregnancy to find out some more.
The Monkey Mind
So the Monkey Mind has a few different definitions, just as Mindfulness does. Let us go over this with an example. Say your pregnant partner snaps or reacts angrily at you. We all know this happens and with good reason too. With the changes in hormones and their body shape changing, I cannot blame them.
Say you then snap back, acting angrily despite you knowing she probably could not help it. Why have you reacted in this way?
The reason – you guessed it, The Monkey Mind.
When you engage with your partner you have two choices, engage in, what I determine to be the Logical Mind or engage the Monkey Mind.
The Logical Mind is one where your reactions and thoughts directly correspond to an input of information with a considered and developed response. This can be based on fact and/or your opinion. This response may engage your partners Monkey Mind but it should not add too much fuel to the fire.
The Monkey Mind is where your response will be based purely on emotion. This can be good emotion, such as happiness. However, it mostly causes a reaction in anger, hatred and a typical response is likely to stir a negative reaction in someone else. When you and your pregnant partner engage using the Monkey Mind things are going down hill quickly. Plus, you are in the position to let it go far easier than she is.
How not to react?
A great question and one humans find extremely difficult.
You need to be Mindful. Easier said than done but this first step is essential.
Start by pausing. The pause is the most essential way to preventing the Monkey Mind from being engaged. Take the scenario we have been using. When your partner snaps or acts angrily towards you – instead of snapping back say nothing. You will feel anger, hurt and a multitude of other negative emotions building up in you. But stop everything you were doing.
Next step, relax. Yeah, this is easier said than done too but we did not say this was easy.
If you are sat down, straighten your back and let your arms fall to your side. If you are stood up let your arms flop to your side and slow things down.
You should close your eyes whilst doing this. It remove the sense of sight and you will not want to react angrily towards your partner if you cannot see her. Well, that is the idea. Whilst doing this your partner might still be engaging her Monkey Mind and berating you. It will pass. It will pass much quicker if you engage your Logical Mind and do not react.
You then need to engage your breathing techniques as shown here. Breathe in and out and make sure you count. This will root you in the moment which is the definition of being Mindful.
This will not come easy to you but it is essential. Your main responsibility is to help your partner, no matter how stubborn and unreasonable she is being. She is the one going through all the change and being mindful is going to benefit both of you.
Once you have gotten to grips with this pass it on to your partner. As advised, you should try to be Mindful together. If both of you can control the Monkey Mind, then this pregnancy is going to be a far more enjoyable experience.