Design Yourself 132: The Power of Pause

Taking time out brings about mixed emotions for a lot of us. We know we’d like to, but how to balance what needs doing with the desire for taking a break. We’ve talked in the past on this podcast about the importance of taking breaks and how they can be fun. But what about when we don’t choose the pause? What about when it feels like it is out of our control? That’s just what we dig into this week. Inspired by an extended power outage on the home front, Sharon discusses key distinctions about the kinds of pauses we take, recent lessons she has learned and some questions to prompt reflection about your own relationship to the concept of pause. From the disruptive nature of stopping to how we react differently to short, medium and long-term breaks, prepare to see with new eyes the power of pause.

Ideas Shared

Two Distinctions About Pauses

  1. Those we create vs. Those that are created for us
  2. Those that we perceive as good vs. Those that we perceive as bad

Sharon’s 5 Lessons Learned About Pause

  • A pause is a kind of disruption
  • A pause isn’t always relaxing
  • I hesitate to eliminate universal pauses
  • I prefer a long pause (2 month sabbatical, multi-week vacation) or a short pause (short walk, deep breathing, 5 minute meditation); the middle ground is my learning edge (half-day retreat; 5 day vacation)
  • Pauses are absolutely necessary!

Reflection questions

  • What does a dreamy pause look like for you? Does it feel attainable? What would support you in pursuing it?
  • What is a pause that didn’t quite work for you? What did you learn from the experience?
  • What happens when you don’t take pauses?
  • What is the opposite of a pause to you? What do you love about that pace?
  • What does a working balance look like for you between stop and go?

Resources and Links