Blue Glass Archive blog Meditation and Monkey Brain Psychology

Meditation and Monkey Brain Psychology

If you’re an avid meditator, or just have ever tried to get a grip on your thoughts in order to achieve some kind of clarity and calmness, you’ve likely encountered something known as “monkey brain.” Monkey brain is the constant stream of racing thoughts that can keep you from fully focusing on your goals.

It’s like that old saying: “monkey brain psychology wolf you feed, the bigger it will become.” You need to stop feeding the darker monkey thoughts and focus on what really matters. That’s why mindfulness and meditation are so valuable in reducing the power of monkey mind over your life and wellbeing.

While monkeys do not have the same specialized neurons in their prefrontal cortex that humans have, they have similar cell types and a large overlap with the human prefrontal cortex connections charted by probabilistic diffusion tractography (reference [25]). These cell types are also present in the anterior cingulate area 24 and in the anterior insula of the human brain. Some studies have linked these cells to the primate understanding of theory of mind, but there is little agreement about this hypothesis.

Taming the Monkey Mind: Exploring the Psychology Behind Racing Thoughts

The key to taming your monkey mind is to identify the behaviors you want to change and use your Intellect to focus on a different set of primal directives (for example, Power, Greed, Acceptance). This will override any bad programming that has been rooted in your ancestors and nurtured by your upbringing. Then, commit to doing 3-4 tasks daily that will help you move closer to your goal and take your practice even further with formal meditation.

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