Take time today to pause, to linger, to quiet the noise and remember that your worth is not measured by your productivity. Destroy the idea that you have to be constantly working or grinding in order to be successful. Embrace the concept that rest, recovery, and reflection are essential parts of the progress towards a successful and ultimately happy life. In our busy world, do not procrastinate to pause, start today.
1. Breathe Deeply
Maybe you haven’t thought about breathing and how it affects our brains. When we take a deep breath and let it out slowly, we are slowing down our body mechanisms and our brain. Controlled breathing “may be the most potent tool we have to prevent our brains from keeping us in a state of stress, and preventing subsequent damage caused by high stress levels.” Creating a pause physiologically helps us.
A client shared with me how she recites the “Serenity Prayer” when she needs a pause. Whether it’s her kids fighting or a decision to make about work, her prayer gives her a pause and helps her focus on what’s important. It may be a few words or something memorized, prayer take the focus of the situation for us to focus and connect with God.
Serenity Prayer: God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; the courage to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference.
3. Drink water or get a snack
It’s difficult to hydrate sufficiently. Our bodies require more water than we think about regularly. Pausing to drink water gives us a physical lift too. When we think of the benefit, add a sip of water as a pause. A protein filled snack can do the same. It’s a break to fuel.
4. Make a connection
Whether it’s a smile, a hug, a text or a phone call, making a connection is a pause. Connections yield self-confidence, empathy, empowerment and positivity. A connected person is a happy person.
5. Take a walk
Getting up and moving around is a physical and mental pause. Getting outside in the green space does even more to give you a pause. Taking a walk gives you time to reflect, engage, create new perspectives and go back to work ready.
6. Take a nap
A nap is the ultimate pause! When you are tired, your brain is stuck and you have no energy to proceed, a nap is the best way to pause.
Practice the Pause when in doubt, angry, tied, and stressed.
Today I’ll eat breakfast outside.
I’ll pick up a book I keep meaning to read.
Today I set down my worries for a while.
I’ll double the amount of eye contact I share with my family and friends.
Today I’ll notice the golden glow the sun casts on my children or grandchildren when I call them in from playing outside.
I’ll smile at someone I pass on the street.
Today I’ll press PAUSE.