Feeling Stuck? Engage Monk Mode.
Exploring life's reset button.
Do you feel like you’re on autopilot? Hanging on in quiet desperation?
Are you pushed down a path against your will, but you can’t identify your captors?
There’s a few ways this can manifest in your day to day.
You’re in a job that allows you to survive. But, you hate the dick heads you work for.
You’re in a relationship because it’s convenient. But, you don’t align with your partner’s values.
You’re living in a body you aren’t proud of. But, fast food tastes good and it’s easy to order on DoorDash.
Before you know it, you’re neck deep in a life you didn’t want, didn’t expect and can’t fucking stand.
Change is possible, whatever your circumstances. If someone tells you otherwise, they are your enemy. Treat them as such.
So, do you want radical change?
Engage Monk Mode.
A person temporarily entering Monk Mode is someone who chooses to disconnect from the outside world and focus on a specific task or goal, usually through solitude and intense concentration. They may engage in activities such as meditation, deep work, or self-reflection, and limit distractions and social interactions. The goal is to achieve a higher level of productivity and personal growth.
Here are some highlights from my own experience the last 4 months:
I stopped drinking
I did not go out and ‘socialize’ on evenings or weekends
I put my hobbies on hold (snowboarding, jiu jitsu)
I drastically cut back my entertainment consumption
I worked on average 8-12 hours 6 days/week
I kept a rigid routine of meals, walking and sleep/wake cycle
I spoke with my mentor 1-2x for an hour each week
I focused on developing a singular idea in my mind (business related)
I kept my ‘circle’ very tight, speaking only with specific individuals over the phone or Zoom
I tried very hard to shut out all mainstream corporate journalism/propaganda/news cycle
You might feel socially isolated.
You might lose friends/piss off people in your direct network.
You might engage in negative self-talk.
You might enjoy the disconnect from social engagements. You might not miss them at all, in fact.
You might cut out toxic people you thought were ‘friends.’
You might find you are more in tune with your mind, body and spirit.
You might find you have accomplished more in a matter of days, weeks and months than you have in the last 5 years of your life.
Resistance = The Enemy of Growth
Is Monk Mode a balanced approach to achieving growth?
Some would say this doesn’t align to a balanced pursuit of Mastery.
Well, consider this…
Many of us spend years in professions, relationships and lifestyles that are against our core values.
We know it’s wrong. We know we don’t want this thing. Yet we do it.
We live lives completely out of balance.
Monk Mode might be that reset button you need. Readjust, realign and start walking the Middle Way.
The critic will say this lifestyle shift is unhealthy, whatever the outcome.
I can hear the whining.
I feel the temptress named Resistance… she’s ever present.
I hear the tormented voice of ‘reason’ try to convince me otherwise.
“Nooo, eat the cupcake. You’ll be fine.” Said your friend, the fatty.
“Just have a drink with me, you’ll be fine.” Said your drinking buddy, the alcoholic.
“No, stay in your job, it’s stable and a good salary.” Said your colleague, the coward who doesn’t want to see you succeed.
Can you feel the resistance? Can you hear the detractors? Can you feel the temptation to stay in your current mode of comfort and status quo?
Enemies. All of them.
I can’t stress enough the dramatic and tangible change that you will endure.
So, let’s ask the question again, is this a balanced approach to life?
Sometimes it’s the only way to achieve balance. It might be the only way you can start living that life of intentionality and purpose.
Take a look at the chart below.
"It is not that we have a short time to live, but that we waste a lot of it." - Seneca
How many of the black boxes have you lived according to your values?
How many of the white boxes do you want to continue to waste?
Perhaps you hit the reset button on the red box. Engage a few days of monastic pursuit. Turn that behavior into something longer.
I don’t know about you, but when I look at the boxes I’ve wasted, it makes me feel sick. I don’t want to look back on my life and see wasted time anymore.
And I have certainly wasted many, many weeks pursuing a life of hedonism. I’ve spent many weeks believing my own lies.
Hitting the reset button has helped me. It might help you too.
See you next week, dear friends.
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Nice approach to create a disruption.
The removal of social life (hobbies, entertainment, etc) for my experience is not very sustainable.
Or even desirable.
How was that part for you?