Blog

What is “A Mindful Pause?”

This is my first post on my new website.  I chose “A Mindful Pause” as the title of the site for a lot of reasons.  The idea of taking a mindful pause is not my original idea, but it is a concept in mindfulness that has really captured my imagination.  Learning how to pause mindfully has helped me in countless ways in my life.  It’s such a simple practice, yet has so much potential.

When you take a mindful pause, you simply stop, or pause, for a moment.  It helps to take a few breaths as you pause.  Or you could notice how your body is feeling.  You can check in with your feelings and emotions.  The point is to slow down and deliberately pause.

I try to take A Mindful Pause……

-before I react to situations in my life.  Doing this enables me to respond wisely, rather than react blindly to what is happening.

-before responding to someone in a conversation.  Sometimes this encourages the speaker to expand more on their feelings and thoughts.

-when I’m teaching or presenting.  This gives students or the audience a chance to process what I’m saying.  Or, it makes them wake up and pay attention if they weren’t listening.  🙂

-between activities in my day.  It’s just a way of slowing down a bit in this ultra-busy culture.

-when I get out of bed in the morning.  I pause and think about things I’m grateful for, rather than immediately thinking about everything I need to do.

-when I get to work in the morning.  I take time to say good morning to colleagues, have some coffee, and give myself the chance to really arrive before plunging into the work day.

-when I see my family in the morning and at the end of the day.  Hugs and kisses are a must.  Taking the time to greet each other properly is a priority.

-when I feel uncomfortable about something that someone said or did.  I try to get curious before I jump to judgements right away.

The other part of the title of my blog is “Training for the Heart and Mind”.  Through mindfulness practices, I believe we can truly train the heart and mind.  Compassion and kindness can increase.  Attention and focus can be improved.

“Neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life.” (MedicineNet.com)  Mindfulness and meditation are ways to train the mind effectively.  So, just as we can train our body through physical exercise, we can train the heart and mind.  It takes practice and commitment.

Thanks for reading my first post.   I hope you pause and take some time to check out the other tabs.  There will be much more to come!