The space between heartbeats, the pause between words, the moment before you take that next breath, the silence between notes. Some say the pause is where you glimpse the meaning, the music or the divine. Sometimes it’s where we meet our sadness or unexpected joy.
The pause is the place of possibility. It’s the space we create so we can make a choice rather than just react. The pause happens when we’re fully in the moment.
Susan David, author of Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life, says we often rely on our established patterns of thinking instead of responding to what is right in front of us. The pause gives us the space to see our automatic response for what it is and then think, do or say something else. Without it we become automatons.
She says we get hooked when we’re not acting according to our values or clear perception. Here are some common hooks that she mentions in her book.
This is when we blame our thinking for our behavior. For instance, when you think to yourself that someone is avoiding you because they don’t like you, and so take the action based on that thought to cut them out of your life. You don’t really know why they are avoiding you or if they even are.
The pause would help you think the next thought mentioned above, that you don’t really know what is going on with that person. From there you could take action based on curiosity rather than a made-up story.
This type of thinking takes you out of the moment. It’s a run-on type of thinking where you start with a reactionary thought. For example if someone is late for an important meeting, your thoughts start to fire off left, right and center about how they always do this and how you’re going to let them have it this time, etc.
If you took a pause, you would create the space to stay in the moment and not let your mind run wild and get you all worked up. You might also stop yourself from doing something that will only cause more trouble.
Old, Outgrown Ideas
These are ideas that you still live by but don’t serve you anymore. Like, all men are jerks or I’ll never learn how to swim. They once may have helped you. Maybe a man in your life as a child hurt you and so you made a decision to not trust. As you get older, that idea may hold you back. You may avoid jobs or other situations that include men, and so stunt your growth and life.
The pause would allow you to take a better look around and see that your old idea isn’t true. Though it may have saved you as a child, it is now only hampering your life.
Why do we feel the need to be right or to have our unjust treatment confirmed? Why can’t we let it go? Our energy is wasted on this type of thinking. When I have to be right or get the last word in, a rift is created in a relationship. When I can’t let go of the past or even the present in terms of someone’s bad treatment of me, I stay in the hurt. I make myself a victim of people’s actions or circumstances and not only drain my energy but lose my power to respond appropriately and in a way that takes care of me.
To pause in the middle of the need to be right or to be confirmed is to give yourself an opportunity to see what you’re doing and then choose something else.
One of the ways you can train your mind to pause is to practice meditation. This week, I’m giving away some meditation tips, book recommendations and other resources to help you create a practice that works for you. You can sign up here to receive it.
If you want to go deeper, A Spell in the Shadows eRetreat helps you relax into winter and these last days of 2017. The first week begins this Friday, Dec. 1 and is all about meditation. The whole program is focused on how to help you slow down and create a more meaningful time during this sacred and hurried season. When you enter 2018 with the ability to pause in grace and gratitude, life becomes so much richer. It’s how you begin to live life from the heart.
This time of year in the US we focus on giving thanks. What if we focused on it every day?
I know there is power in the practice of gratitude. When I’m in that mindset of gratefulness, things flow and I’m happier. When I forget to practice, I get moody and suddenly things aren’t flowing. I haven’t yet reached full embodiment of this attitude and that’s okay. I can practice.
The only other words I have right now are…
Gratitude Is a Sky Filled with Stars
Have you seen the Milky Way,
its clouds of light pouring into our world?
A bed of dark holding light past and present
opens my heart, this heart hidden in the darkness
of my flesh. A container of love, of worlds,
of night become brilliant by the appearance
of billions of stars.
May you have a blessed Thanksgiving…every day.
Thank you for reading. I have a free gift for you. I recorded a guided meditation on gratitude and created a PDF called 5 Ways to Tap Into Gratitude. You can receive them here. If you’re on my mailing list, I already sent you the link in an email.
Sometimes we have difficulty manifesting our heart’s desires. When it’s not working, it may be because we don’t trust it will.
Creation begins with the absence of what we want which invokes the desire. The important thing to remember is that it is never truly absent. A shift of consciousness allows you to see it and trust brings it into your experience.
Sounds simple, but in my experience it hasn’t always been. I’ve always had a certain amount of trust that things will work out and they have at the level of just barely. Because I don’t trust the Universe will provide my greatest desires, I protect myself by not expecting much. My early experiences taught me expecting my heart’s desires only leads to heartbreak. A shift in consciousness is required as is a trust so deep that I can expect amazing. I have begun to do this. I look at the beautiful house I live in now after being forced out of my apartment this summer and think wow!
We all have different reasons for not trusting ourselves, others, the Universe. Sometimes checking out those reasons is helpful and can aid in our healing. But when it comes down to creating and manifesting our heart’s desires, maybe we need to begin the process with affirmations around our ability to trust. Often we focus our manifesting work on the thing we want. But first it may help to ask ourselves if we believe it’s possible, do we trust it will happen? If the answer is no, then we can take a deep breath, step back and work on manifesting belief and trust.
Do you trust? If not, we can talk about it. I can help you with a soul healing session or even with an affirmative prayer.
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