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Instead of Should/Shouldn’t or Good/Bad, use this…

Hey there Evolutionary Entrepreneurs! You’re reading my 2x weekly newsletter where I share actionable tips on business, mindset, and creating leverage so you can build a profitable coaching business doing what you love and sharing your dharma.

Welcome to Monk Mode Mondays, a simple practice to play the inside-out game of entrepreneurship!

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The Utility of Your Thoughts and Emotions

Happy Monday my Evolutionary Entrepreneurs!

I reflected on my list of pending projects and tasks this weekend and was hit with a wave of thoughts and emotions.

  • There’s still so much left to do but I should take the next few weeks off.

  • Damn, I said I was going to finish that project but I didn’t. This is bad.

  • Crypto is going for a bull market, I should have invested more.

  • No wait, my focus should be on finishing up the membership community.

  • I haven’t completed my xmas shopping list yet, I’m terrible.

  • I hit my targets for 2023, but it should have been more.

  • My strategic planning for 2024 is fire! I should probably get a head start.

The list goes on with a range of feelings triggered by each thought.

If you’re anything like me, there’s an ongoing train of “should and shouldn’t” or “good and bad”.

Each time I catch one of these trains, I’m reminded of the paradox of our mind.

How it’s both our most powerful asset in creating freedom and at the same time our greatest prison.

We can leverage (and monetize) our knowledge and experience to create freedom and impact.

And can also be imprisoned by our own thoughts and emotions.

The Buddhists teach that the root of suffering and misery comes from attachment. Our attachment to a desired outcome creates behaviors of craving or aversion.

The solution is to practice acceptance. To be ok with whatever the outcome is, to be balanced and centered.

Easier said than done, right?

Trust me, I know. I’ve practiced this as a monk for 7 years and 15 years after that.

Radical acceptance is transformational. And it’s not easy.

There is a practice I’ve found to be a great stepping stone toward mastering acceptance.

It’s about changing the lens you use to look at your thoughts, emotions, and situations.

Our habit is to look at ourselves and the world through the lens of:

  • Should and Shouldn’t

  • Good and Bad

This judgment creates a prison we put ourselves in.

It creates space for shame and blame.

Instead, a better lens we can use to look at our thoughts, feelings, and circumstances is to look at the utility of them.

When observing your thoughts and feelings, ask yourself if this is:

  • Useful or Not Useful

  • Effective or Ineffective

This lens invites curiosity instead of shame and blame.

Does this thought currently serve the best version of myself I’m trying to be?

Is this thought useful for the vision and goals I’m building?

If there’s utility in your thoughts and feelings, great let’s leverage it.

If there’s no utility, let it go: “thank you, but not now”.

While we continue to practice and strive towards a monk-like radical acceptance, an easier and perhaps more useful approach is to find the utility in our thoughts and feelings.

Hope this mind medicine serves you in the final weeks of 2023.



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