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when the old breath has left you forever 

rest

to enjoy this emptiness

when the new breath has filled you up

rest

to enjoy this fullness

-sandra sabatini

Consider all the things you might PAUSE in your day to day living:  the TV, a podcast, music, a video game, the microwave. We probably press PAUSE on “things” all day long and we don’t even notice it. However, I believe when it comes to pressing PAUSE for ourselves, we rarely do it; until we are forced to by falling ill, feeling tired and too exhausted to do anything. The body decides for us and then we most STOP not PAUSE.

I know, you might be reading this saying, “but I don’t have a moment to pause.” You feel you have to go, go, go. To that I’d say, for every moment you go, go, go, you could consider slow, slow, slow. Are you the ultimate multitasker? I am. Do you believe if you don’t “get it done” no one else will do it or the world will fall apart? I’ll tell you, that was/is me. However, I am working on breaking the go, go, go habit.

It’s been my experience that most of us are on the hamster wheel of life and have a hard time getting off. We are anxious, stressed, fatigued and sometimes even exhausted (this is the end stage of the stress response by the way!). We have forgotten how to TAKE A MOMENT AND JUST PAUSE. We have lost connection with our body, breath and mind.

My normal response to this would be to take up yoga, meditation or just some form of fitness. However, my own experience (I do all of these things) has taught me there needs to be another option. I am an advocate of consistent small moments/movements and being. It doesn’t work for everyone to take up yoga, meditation and/or fitness right away.

Pausing between stimulus and response allows you to show up in your life.

 — Roma Downey

This quote sums it up. It’s in the in between, when there is space or a pause that can make a big difference.

A PAUSE might just be a deep breath. It might be being present during a red light. It might be sitting with a thought rather than reacting or even responding. It might be waiting a moment before talking. It could be watching a TV show or doing the dishes.

When you PAUSE, it’s like an intermission. It’s not that you walk away and don’t look back. And, it’s not necessarily a long period of time. It might only be a second. Life continues while you PAUSE.

The PAUSE is just a moment to reflect, catch up with yourself or from last month’s theme SOFTEN (read post HERE).

The PAUSE allows us to feel in the moment.

So often we move and respond from fear. When you PAUSE, you give yourself a moment to check-in and see how you’re feeling. The PAUSE gives us time to see a bigger picture. Like Leonardo DaVinci says, when we are close up it can be hard to see. He recommends we take a step back and get a different view. The PAUSE allows for this different perspective.

To change your go, go, go habit, try implementing pauses into your day.  Eventually, you might start to notice all the natural pauses in your day and they will become easier and easier to take.

Try this to get started:

  • Pause while standing or sitting.
  • Feel your inbreath and your outbreath.
  • Feel your feet touching the ground.
  • Feel your hands.
  • Feel the top of your head.

Repeat as often as needed.

Here’s to creating a PAUSE habit.