Practice the Pause.

I think recently the world has been a little bit mixed up for everyone. I’ve thought a lot about what I wanted to blog about knowing that not just my family, but my community, county, state, and country is going through such a unique an unprecedented time. There are so many questions and not enough answers. No one quite knows what to do with so many uncertainties. Some people are stuck going to work and worrying about what they could bring home to their families, and others are stuck in a quarantine with no idea of how long it will last. It’s created an unsettling amount of chaos, not just in our lives but our minds too. I know I find myself scared of the future for more reasons than I’d like to admit. I also find myself constantly repeating the phrase practice the pause. It was from a quote I read a long time ago that brings me comfort in times of unknowing, “Practice the pause. When in doubt, pause. When angry, pause. When tired, pause. When stressed, pause. And when you pause, pray.”

At this current moment the only thing I can control is how I react to the things going on around me. And before I react, I need to take the time to pause. In that pause, I think. I make decisions that are best for myself and my family. For the people I interact with everyday. But it carries over to all aspects of my life. It’s a habit that took a long time for myself to get into: pause. It’s so easy to jump to the first reaction, to act on impulse, to decide without a second thought. But it’s more important to pause.

Sometimes it’s as simple of a few minutes of meditation, wherein I go over the options in my head. How do I want to handle this situation? Does my initial reaction coincide with the person I want to be? Will I be happy when I look back on the way this played out? It is SO easy to act on impulse. Especially for me. I have always been an impulsive person and had little regard for the consequences of my actions; how my choices could not only effect myself but the people that I love and care about. When you take steps to actively become and stay a person you are proud to be, to create the life and mindset you want to have, it takes practice and it takes being able to pause. Some situations are more important than just human instinct. Some situations need that five minutes of self reflection, that simple pause.

These are trying times. Not only are we facing a situation that no one knows exactly what to do with, but we’re all still trying to keep are normal day to day lives moving smoothly as well. It requires incredible balance, resilience, and patience. Use that patience to pause. Even when things are uncertain, take the chance to pause. Remember to count the things you know for certain and can control. Remember to appreciate the people you can lean on. Remember to pause, and if it works for you then use the pause to pray with all that you can. It takes a serious amount of self love to be able to remember the future you’re trying to build, even when you’re unsure what that future will look like.

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