The Power of Taking Regular Pauses

When we're constantly on the go, we often forget to slow down and take time to recharge.

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One of the greatest disadvantages of a modern lifestyle is that we are constantly on the go. Multitasking is the new fashion statement, and we guilt-trip ourselves every time we take a break. Pause rituals are an antidote to the obsession we have with optimizing our time, resources and energy in a seamless manner. These practices are very personal activities that we need to build in our daily schedule that allow us to take a break and energize us. Just as we choose to charge our phones and laptops, pause rituals do the same for our mind, body and soul.

The idea of calling it a pause ritual emerged from the understanding that while we all appreciate the value of pause, it only assumes importance when we translate it to a palpable, behavioural goal or ritual we can work toward. The word pause means a temporary halt — a break — in our daily life. Here the word is ritual which basically involves creating a set of self-soothing activities in our daily schedule, instead of engaging only when we are heading for a breakdown or meltdown. 

Your exercise class, for instance, or the practice of deep breathing are examples of pause rituals. They are acts that we perform singularly while keeping our gadgets away.

Excerpted from Anxiety: Overcome It and Live without Fear, published May 1, 2020. Harpercollins.

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