February 11


Monkey Brain

By Celeste DeCamps

February 11, 2020

breathe, confidence, Focus, mindfulness, Monkey Brain

“When I’m NOT on the beach, I think about BEING on the beach. When I’m on the beach, I think about WHEN I will BE back to the beach. I finally learned to BE on the beach and BE happy.”

I write a lot about mindfulness. I’m finding the more I can reign in my monkey mind the better I feel. Just like somebody who wants to tell you all about their weight loss in hopes of inspiring you to do the same. (Really they just want to brag). I want to share my newfound sense of confidence. (I want to brag too). It’s all about staying present. I know it’s easier said than done. I’m definitely a work in progress. I have to constantly remind myself to be aware of my thoughts and emotions. Oh, look, cookies!!

I think it’s become harder to stay in the moment when I feel like I’m being bombarded with information all the time. Of course, it’s my fault. If I’m not on my phone, then I’m on the computer. I enjoy watching television, but if a commercial comes on, then I look at FaceBook. Actually speaking and being with people is quite novel now. 

I’m waiting for a time when a group of people are together telling stories to each other. All of a sudden someone takes out their phone and everyone looks at him with disdain. One person finally says, “Oh my god, I can’t believe you’re looking at your phone! That is so 2020.” Yes, looking at your phone will not be in style anymore or saying OMG. 

I am doing my best to stay aware of my thoughts. As soon as a memory of a past event  makes its way into my consciousness I will say to myself “stop.” It keeps me from going down that rabbit hole of reliving a time that doesn’t serve me any longer. Of course, I have to remember to say “stop” to myself and not out loud, otherwise, the bartender stops pouring. I do the same thing when I start to try to predict the future. It’s not like I picture an amazing life on the beach, sipping champagne.  No, I always see myself in the middle of Armageddon. I totally rock the Mad Max look, though. 

Before the stress or anxiety kick in I remind myself to breathe. It’s amazing how quickly everything comes into focus. I look around and realize that I have everything I need. I’m healthy, all my loved ones are safe and I happen to have a bottle of champagne on a shelf. It’s a wonderful feeling when I allow myself to see how far I’ve come. My future doesn’t seem as scary because I know I won’t waste energy worrying about it. The biggest challenge I have is to stay on top of my goals. When I concentrate on the task at hand, time doesn’t have any meaning. I know that whatever challenges come my way I will tackle them head on. Being in the here and now, gives me a sense of clarity. I don’t miss ruminating over past actions. It’s also a nice break from worrying about what boots go with my futuristic chain mail outfit. 

I believe that’s why being present and practicing mindfulness has become so important to me. I’m stepping away from my computer more often and taking a walk outside. When I’m with friends I don’t take out my phone. When commercials come on, I want to say I do some stretches, but that’s not true. I still look at FaceBook. Hey, baby steps.  

Take time to look at your thoughts as they come in and out or your mind. If you get tired of changing the channels from one past or future scene try looking at what’s directly in front of you. Be aware of your breathing. Observe your surroundings. Enjoy the moment. You may be surprised to find that the person you are eating with is not on their phone. He wants to have a real conversation with you. Let’s make that the new trend. 

About the author

Celeste DeCamps has a B.A. in Communications from the University of Miami. She worked in radio and television, was a professional belly dancer, drummer, percussionist, nightclub owner, and a sales rep for Southern Wine and Spirits for 12 years. Throughout her different career moves, speaking to and teaching women how to be more confident is Celeste's most fulfilling job.

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