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Think like a monk

Updated: Oct 5, 2021

by Jay Shetty

  • Understanding the meaning of the book

The book think like a monk is an excellent solutions on all of our daily life problems as well as it guides step by step to how to find our purpose of life by the monk point of view.

It mostly strains on the topic about human well being as well as about finding the real happiness and satisfaction in our life.

It actually is a all inclusive life lesson guide written by a former monk.

the book shows the difference how a monkey mind reacts to the situation and how a monk tries to find the root cause of every problem. the monkey looks for instant solutions which doesn't last long but the monk mind looks at the root cause and eradicate the problem from it's root and finds a permanent or a long term solution.

The book is divided into three parts-


1. Let go - Jay talks about the the things that holds our back which leads to our downfall of our character. He talks about the particular things which we should let go, like negativity instant gratification, addiction, lust and fear. These things leads us in forming obstacles in our life and Jay gives perfect solutions on the problems which makes us to realize the things we as a monkey mind are doing it wrong. He makes us realize the real problem behind our downfall and helps to find the real purpose in our life.


2. Grow - In this part Jay talks about the daily routine or how we should have our life organized in order to live productively. it involves things like single tasking ,letting go of your ego, detaching from the negatives, how to focus on your work with the help of meditation and keeping your mindset positive. There are a lots of real life experiences and multiple studies and statistics provided in the book which helps you to carve your life in a proper shape and making it more meaningful and happy. He explains about the natural tendency of the monkey mind of bending towards more negative side in your thought process while how the monk mind tries to find every positive aspect in a problem and tries to tackle it with mere positivity. This part also thrives on the fact of living in your Dharma or the thing in which you invest your time to become skilful, have a passion about it and also serve the world through your work.

the Dharma equation is Passion + Expertise + Usefulness = Dharma. It guides you to follow your own path instead of replicating others and following their path to the main stream.


3. Give - In this part Jay speaks about the service you do to the world and how you can make your passion to earn to compassion to serve. It mainly speaks about human connection through your correspondence and also how you can show gratitude to people with your happiness is being served by them. there are a lot of advices and experiences narrated by him to make you understand about service in life and achieving internal happiness through it. Service should be more over like a intentional one rather than unintentionally because when you serve with intention of internal happiness you doesn't expect for reward in return, the one receiving it and the one giving the service are happy in their own state of mind. "True service doesn't expect or even want anything in return". Selfish service doesn't bring you the feeling of anything.


Difference between the monkey mind and the monk mind

The Monkey Mind

overwhelmed by multiple branches.

overthinks and procrastinates

distracted by small things


looks for pleasure

compares, complains and criticizes

short term gratification


The Monk Mind

focused on the root cause of the issue

analyzes and articulates


single tasking

looks for meaning

compassionate, caring, collaborative

long term gain


Things you can't miss from the book

EGO - Jay says that the biggest obstacle to learning is being a know it all. This self confidence is rooted as ego. There are 2 types of ego true ego and false ego. the real ego is our very essence the consciousness that makes us aware and awake to reality. The false ego is an identity crafted to preserve the sense of being the most significant, the most important, the one who knows everything. "Pride of wealth destroys wealth, pride, of strength destroys strength and in the same manner pride of knowledge destroys knowledge" Ego is actually a a mask of insecurities which makes us to convince ourselves and everyone else that we are special. Ego makes us a liar. The ego doesn't want to better, it wants us to been as better.


TAKING OVER YOUR NEGATIVITY - The best method to overcome negativity is SPOT, STOP, SWAP.


Spot the toxic impulses around you . Listing your negative thoughts and comments will help you contemplate their origins.


after understanding the roots of negativity the next step is to silence the negative ideas. Make room for thoughts and actions which add up to your life.


after spotting and stopping the negativity in your mind and heart start to amend it. Be mindful about negativity and be specific about your words.


MEDITATION- Meditation is a really important part of a positive mindset. As Nikola Tesla said that "If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of frequency, vibrations and energy". Meditation increases your focus power it also gives you the peace which we need in this distracted lifestyle. There are many types of meditation listed in the book like the mantra meditation or the simple breathing exercises meditation. You just have to look for the positive vibe to make your day awesome.


Conclusion- The book is a stepwise guide to how to make our life meaningful and more purposeful everyday, from a perspective of a monk. the book will make you SPOT , STOP and SWAP the errors which we generally do in our day to day life. The book is a must read if you have to change for your own self. It's absolutely an life changing experience.


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