The Power of Pause

How stepping back helps move us forward

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A favorite quote from Benjamin Franklin is “When in Doubt, Don’t.” This validation of the importance of hesitation belies taking a moment to pause. Pressing the pause button in life can validate the course we are taking or help redirect us back on track.

In this digital era, there is an implied demand for immediacy. We find ourselves operating at a quickened pace just trying to keep up. Yet, with speed can come carelessness and errors. Is there no greater need for pause than to avoid inaccuracy or finding oneself off-course?

Taking a moment to pause also affords choice. In stepping back for a moment, we can review our options and re-check that we are on the right track. Pause may also allow for fresh perspective and even moving a project forward in a different (better) direction.

Pausing is not stagnation. To pause does not mean to stall. With pause, the motor is still running as you review the directions.

Most importantly, taking a moment to pause provides time to think. It validates “let me think for a moment” for what it is, rather than a perceived wasted time.

Consider the value of pressing the pause button to ask yourself key questions: What is the end goal? Where are we moving with this project? Are there options we have not considered? Is this where I want to be?

Isn’t that worth pausing for?

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.


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