Monkey Brain

As I was sitting drinking my Saturday coffee and going over the to-do list for the day, I realized that my mind felt less cluttered and calm rather than jumbled with racing thoughts. My mom refers to that jumbled thoughts feeling as….monkey brain. She says it’s when your mind is so full of thoughts, ideas, or whatever, that it feels like a bunch of tiny monkeys running around in your head. That pretty much sums up my brain the last few weeks.

I could blame the monkey brain and opposite of calm that I had been feeling on Christmas prep and life in general lately. Greg travels a lot this time of month so I often feel the extra responsibility from his absence. But when I thought about it, his work and travel schedule hasn’t bothered me. He loves his job which makes me thankful that he’s spending his time doing something he enjoys, and the boys and I pretty much have our routine running smoothly. Thankfully, my monkey brain wasn’t from the busyness of December, or our crazy family routine this month. Sometimes I actually think I thrive from strange schedules and random routines. Busy, not so much, but random and strange,bring it on.

As I thought about it, what was different is that I had not gone on Facebook in days. I’ve never been a big Facebook-er, but over the past few months {with my anonymous account} I had been going on local home school boards, favorite authors, or inspiring Facebook pages more often. I wouldn’t really participate or add in my comments on these pages, so I felt more like a voyeur, which felt odd and unnatural. I wanted to be aware of what was going on in case there was something we wanted to participate in, but yet I realized that I felt so much on the outside that I never felt comfortable jumping in. I started to feel the monkey brain starting as I wondered if I should go from anonymous to full in {on Facebook}. Even though I didn’t feel like all the events and things listed were necessarily things we would do, the thought of them still filled my brain. Honestly, it made me feel a little wonky {my word for not feeling myself}.

fomo

I’ve mentioned before about FOMO {fear of missing out}. Sadly, in my opinion, even though Facebook can be wonderful and bring old friends and family together plus a bunch of other great things….it can also have a negative impact. It can accentuate the FOMO and make you feel like your current life needs to be more. For me, the little I would go on to FB made me feel like I wasn’t doing enough or I wasn’t good enough or part of enough. It was telling me I needed to do and be more, and that I was failing, or worse-making me feel rejected. Don’t even get me started on the feeling of being left out after viewing something on FB. I have had more than a few friends share of hurt feelings or rejection after seeing photos or reading about something they wish they had been part of. Personally, I would actually find myself praying before going on FB hoping to not feel anything negative as I read or after I got off. Again, I had also been seeing/reading some wonderful things. The trouble is, there can always be a little junky-junk mixed in with the good, just enough to tarnish the good.

The truth is that what we read and the pictures we see on FB are not the full story.  I am very sure the reality of the actual situation doesn’t match the story we concoct in our head. Regardless, they are someone else’s stories, not mine or yours. I know I want to live MY story and not live vicariously through someone else’s. The best scenario is having whatever we view or read on Facebook or other places not affect us, to not let the heaviness of inadequacy or comparison weigh us down, to actually not even let comparisons happen.  The best thing would be to know that how our days are spent are just as they should be; kiss FOMO goodbye and replace it with the peace of knowing that what you do or don’t do is the best for you and your family. At least that is what I want.

So for the past several days I just stopped. I stopped checking in to FB and I fully became present in what was in front of me or on my calendar. Guess what I noticed? As each day went by, the monkey brain and gloomy feeling of FOMO faded away.  My world felt a little smaller, but it felt stronger and better. I believe the more I become grounded in knowing what is best for us, the more the other stuff won’t matter. I know this is true because it’s happening already. I’m feeling more clarity after just a few days. I’m not sure what to do from here. Maybe sometimes, the less you know the better? As far as Facebook, I’ve talked to several friends who have also shared that they were considering deleting their accounts. Is it an all or nothing thing? That’s what I’m trying to figure out. For now, I’m going to keep praying about it and pay attention to His guidance through it all. For now, I’m happy to say goodbye to the monkeys and hello to calm.

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