our monkey minds


My friend coined the phrase “monkey mind” for me when I was talking to her before Christmas. I still wasn’t too sure about what I wanted to do or what was going to happen. More so, I wasn’t sure I was able to do what I would like to do. Or so I thought.

For the most part of 2010 I was writhing in pain. As the year neared its end, I felt I was slowly recovering, physically and mentally. I started to think about my “next steps” after the bank. But I didn’t know what I wanted to do. My passions and interests from before seemed dull. My hobbies were monotonous. And even though I enjoyed calligraphy classes during it, once I got home, life seemed banal. I felt numb and confused. More so, lost. What should I do? What do I want to do?

As I was chatting with my friend, she said to me “noch, actually you do know, you are just not letting yourself realize it.” At first I was hesitant still, and then I gingerly asked, “Really, so I can really write a book and have it published?” Of course, why not? Why doubt myself now? The desire to write a book was engrained in me already since I was 6 years old and “published” my first book about a caterpillar that had too many feet, drawn on a sketchbook and bound by plastic rings.

I had approached clarity but I didn’t know it. Even if I knew it, I doubted myself. It was a naughty monkey in my mind playing tricks on me.

We all have a monkey mind to some extent. And it shouldn’t stop us from doing what we want. Send the monkeys back to the jungle where they belong…


5 Responses

  1. Noch: I love this post – appreciate you sharing our conversation. Often, it’s amazing how much we do know about what we want – but layers of doubt, fear, and old habits can cover up our true desires. The process of peeling back the layers is an important one. Cheers to your writing, and sending a hug your way.


  2. nochnoch says:

    thanks for giving me the inspiration for this post! and cheering me on 🙂
    love u back!

  3. […] than occasionally, the simple act of sipping tea agitates me because in my head my little noch monkey mind asks me why I’m not “doing something”. Practice some calligraphy perhaps, it asks? At least […]

  4. […] our monkey minds […]

about Noch Noch

Enoch Li, (pen name: Noch Noch) was born and raised in Hong Kong and Australia. She has also studied / worked / lived in the US, France, UK, Japan, The Netherlands, China, and has travelled to more than 40 countries. She loves travelling and her curiosity in foreign cultures and languages has led her to enjoy her life as an international executive in the banking & finance industry. However, she was forced to take time off work in 2010 due to her illnesses and after spending time in recovery, cooking, practising Chinese calligraphy, reading and writing – in short, learning to take care of herself and letting out the residual work stress, she has transitioned into a Social Entrepreneur and founded BEARAPY to help corporates make workplaces mentally healthy, and support executives to become more resilient.