The Power of the Pause

CHICOPEE, Mass. (Mass Appeal)  The Power of the Pause:  Have you ever said, “Why did I say that? Or Why did I text that? Or Why did I do that?” Sometimes, pausing for just a second before reacting can eliminate the “why did I do that?” for good! Shira Block shared tips.

  • What is the Power of the Pause? Our reactions to stressful interactions aren’t always the best. A strategically placed Pause allows us to interrupt our knee jerk response and react more productively.
  • How do you know when its time to apply the Pause to an interaction? There are several ways to know.  1. If you are having a conversation with someone you often get into arguments with, chances are a strategically placed Pause will prevent a repeat of the same old fight.  2. If your body reacts. Your body is the perfect warning signal that we are about to enter into uncomfortable interaction. 3. When you start a conversation or receive an email or text and it makes you anxious–its time for the Pause before reacting.
  • Why take the time to Pause? In a matter of seconds, a strategically placed pause allows you to decide what outcome you want out of the interaction rather than unconsciously responding in a familiar way that will lead you to a potentially bad place.
  • What do I do during the Pause? Ask yourself, “What outcome do I want from this interaction and what response will more likely get me there?” Or, say, “Let me get back to you on that,” rather than saying the first thing that comes out of your mouth. Or, ask yourself, “if I were the better woman or better man, how would I respond” — then respond that way.
  • Why is it worth taking the time to Pause? It gives you your power back. It puts your conversation in the hands of your thinking self, rather than your reacting self. And – you’ll never have to say, why did I do that, again.

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