Recently I was introduced to a concept called Monk Manual. At first I had no idea what it was but a manual for Monks that you could apply to your everyday life? I’m in.
After learning more about it I learned that the Monk Manual is a three month self-reflection planner. It’s purpose is to help you discover where you are spending your time, how your relationships are doing, if you’re staying on track with your personal goals, and more. It is called the Monk Manual because it seeks to apply a method of living, thinking, and believing that Monks adhere to.
Where the world says focus on more, the monk says focus on less. Where the world seeks to master outcomes, the monk seeks to master self. Where the world fills our lives with noise and distraction, the monk fills his or her life with quiet and focus. Where the world pursues a life of independence, the monk pursues a life of trust, walking the path of life with God and others. Where the world medicates, the monk meditates. -Monk Manual mission
All of those concepts are deeply intriguing to me, especially in this age of polarized relationships and social media overload. It also reminds me of the Examine practice in which the participant spends time each day in prayer, contemplation, and reflection.
The Monk Manual pages are set up like a daily, weekly, and monthly planner but it is only intended to be used for three months. 90 days is the amount of time needed to truly do a deep dive evaluation of where you have been, where you are, and where you are going. Monk Manual pages can be downloaded by signing up here! You can try out the pages for only $7.
It took me a minute to understand how to use the Monk Manual. Thankfully, once I was on the email list I received emails from the creator with helpful tips and explanations about how to use the manual. Take a peak at the Monk Manual user guide you receive when you download the pages:
Up until now the Monk Manual has only been available via the downloadable pages. That is how I used it. However, it’s a lot of pages to print out so I decided to just print out the pages I needed for a month and integrated them into my daily calendar.
For those who need beautiful things in our hands and not just pages printed at Kinkos, they just came out with a beautiful leather-bound book via their kickstarter page. The Monk Manual is completely home-grown and ready for production. The Early Bird price is only $26 and it will be delivered by Christmas. Just in time to start the new year with a resolution game plan in hand (literally and figuratively). Hop on over to their kickstarter page and watch the video. It does a really good job explaining the concept and how it all started. (THE $26 PRICE IS LIMITED TO THE FIRST 100! After that the price is $29 – Still a really good price)
I’m not going to lie. It takes a lot of dedication to make this work and be effective. But that is case with any sort of self-reflective practice. You can’t just start it one day and then not think about it for a month. It takes daily attendance in the morning, evening, and throughout the day to really see what is going on in your daily life and how it is effecting your productivity, relationships, and spiritual well-being. Time is also spent at the beginning and ending of each week and month to reflect on the highs and lows of each week and how you can do better next week.
The Monk Manual isn’t for the faint of heart. It is for people who are really looking for a way to fine tune their mental and spiritual well-being and bring it in alignment with everyday life.
Sign up here to receive free Monk Manual printable pages
This isn’t a sponsored post. I just really thought you, dear reader, would be interested in the Monk concept of balancing work, life, and spirit.