The power of the PAUSE

The power of the PAUSE

The power of the pause is a simple technique for being calm and less reactive with your spouse, your kids, your friends, your parents, the noisy neighbor, and the adorable teenager who refuses to clean out his car, etc.
Let’s say something happens that gets your temperature up!  Someone says or does something annoying, disrespectful, oblivious … Oops sorry, I got carried away.
Anyway, you’re upset.  Maybe your blood is starting to boil …
The moment this happens, use the power of the pause:
1.  Think PAUSE – Just stop. This simple and seemingly tiny act of bravery is larger than you think. BECAUSE WE ALL KNOW IT’S REALLY HARD TO PAUSE WHEN OUR JUICES ARE FLOWING!
Pausing gives us a chance to slow down.
If your knee jerk reaction is to overreact, then pausing is a triumph in and of itself.
2.  NAME WHAT YOU’RE FEELING AND BREATHE – Simply notice what you’re feeling and name it.  For example:  I’m mad.  I am hurt. I feel like crying. (Said to yourself or out loud.)
3.  Keep breathing deeply and gently until you feel better and calm enough to address the situation.
Dr. Dan Siegel, a professor of psychiatry at the UCLA school of medicine, coined the phrase: Name it To Tame it … in the brain.
NAME IT TO TAME IT
He teaches parents how to coach their children when the children are upset.
The principles apply to adults as well.  When we name an emotion, the brain sends soothing neurotransmitters to the limbic system, the part of the brain that wants to run away.
Soothing … I love the sound of that.
For instance, when a child is scared, just naming it and saying: I’m scared, helps her calm down.
The more accurate you can be in naming the emotion, the better the result.
That’s why it helps for parents to be in tune with their children, to help them name their emotion.
By the same token, it’s important for adults to be in tune with themselves! 
Being able to stay calm in the storm isn’t easy.
However, as we care for our deeper needs, we feel calmer and more steady.

That’s all for now … I’ll be following up with more about how you can let your calmer, steady side prevail.

The kindness of people.

Lately, I’ve been thinking of all the mothers who have younger children at home during Covid.
Younger through teens years anyway.
And … YOU ROCK!  Seriously, you mom’s rock.
I used to hyperventilate over how to occupy my kids for a measly summer … and this is a very long summer.
So, sending you our admiration and respect! 
This pandemic has affected ALL 7.8 billion of us … and in different ways.
It’s certainly a challenging time.
It is what it is.
For me, someone who REALLY DOESN’T like feeling stuck, I am looking at my life as creatively as I can.
So, I remind myself:  It is what it is.
And this helps a bit.
Isn’t it funny how a trite phrase can soothe my mind?
Why does this five word sentence feel good?
Because in that moment, I am not resisting what is happening.
This is not throwing in the towel.  For me, it’s kind of the serenity prayer:
Help me change what I can, accept what I can’t …
And then I notice …  how MANY people are really kind right now.
Big time.

The kindness of people

The kindness of people has reached a very high level.
I hear all around me:
Be safe.  Be careful.  Thinking of you.  Thank you for being here.  Thank you for your service.  Are you OK?
And that’s cool.
Therefore, while I am not diggin’ this at all, I accept it week by week and keep my thoughts positive for the future.
So our young people aren’t inundated with pessimism.
Because pessimism is like air pollution.
So, when the ATT agent accidentally disconnects our call for the 7th time, since they’re working from home and have questionable phone service …
I think:  It is what it is.
And I call again 3 days later after I’ve calmed down. (Even though I’ve lost 7 hours from my life.)

Thoughts to clean the air

At a minimum, I can avoid polluting the air around ME.  Some thoughts that help:
We are not alone in this.
I am grateful for this, this and this.
Oh, and I’m grateful for BLANK.  (I know we’ve had this idea drilled into our heads, But truly … Gratitude instantly raises our energy.)
This is temporary.
I will not jump ahead in my thoughts.
I’m doing the best I can today.
Sending a very big hello to you and hoping you’re safe and doing ok …