Recently, I was coaching the team of one of my favorite organizations Black Girl Ventures. We were talking about practices for connecting to ourselves. Each person shared how they start their day connecting to themselves. I shared the importance of pausing, aka mindfulness, and how it can be helpful throughout your work day. One of the call participants wanted to understand why I would encourage people to pause during the day. It felt like stopping momentum to him. He really liked to feel like he was moving through his day.
After the call, I wondered how I had talked about pausing which made it sound like stopping. He isn’t unusual. Many of my clients and those I meet when I speak are operating at a fast pace. The power of pausing is its ability to connect us to our curiosity. The space of curiosity gives us room to be creative and to see situations, people, and even ourselves from a different perspective. It helps us wonder what else is possible. It also allows our inner wisdom to be louder than all of our inner mind frick.
I find that a pause for me is most needed when I am in analysis paralysis. My mind is racing or when I feel reactive emotionally. The power of pausing returns me to being present, slows down my brain, and then I can tap into my intuition. Intuitive decision-making is very simple compared to running something over and over again in your mind, making a pro/con list, or just analyzing data.
When life is stressful or busy, I tend to pause more than once in a day. If you have ever heard the expression Work Smarter Not Harder, it relates directly to pausing for me. When I am working hard, I feel like any interruption is upsetting or stopping forward motion. When I am working smarter, I know that pausing helps me clarify the outcome, intention, and best actions.
There are many ways to “pause” as I am talking about it. Doing something or doing nothing, whichever allows you to get present and connected to curiosity will do the trick. Box breaths. Power naps. Snack break. Going for a walk. Dancing to music. Mediating. Shifting your focus to something else entirely, from working on a blog post to reading an article about a topic that interests you.
Ultimately, pausing is a step in accessing your intuitive decision-making abilities. If you would like to have greater access to your intuition, it might be time to try Pausing.
When is a good time for you to pause?
Have you ever used mindful techniques before? What worked?
What does it look like for you to pause?
Let me know how it goes. AND as always, please feel free to ask clarifying questions.