The Gift of the Pause

with Tori Greising, teacher at The Grinning Yogi

The end of the year brings to us many points along the path - points of completion and continuations - the Winter Solstice, the Full Moon, religious holidays, the transition to the New Year. Each of these moments invites us to pause, to reflect, and often to celebrate.  

For some, the end of the year is a necessary time to be quiet and look within - a celebration of contemplation. For others, this time of year is full of gifts, parties, people, and community. Still others might find comfort in the simple continuation of daily life without much attention to specific dates or traditions. How each of us chooses to honor these ‘end of the year’ events is individual. There is, however, something to be said for everyone inviting a moment of pause.  

When we pause, take a breath and find stillness - even if just for a few moments - we give ourselves permission to truly be in that moment. We allow ourselves to feel the capacity and complexity - and the honest goodness - that a full deep breath can bring to our bodies and minds. We stop and appreciate our daily rhythms. We remove ourselves from the ‘busy’ness. We clear our sights and invite the experience of just being - again, even if only for a moment.  

This year has been full. It has been full of many great things. It has been full of many difficult things. It has been full of change - on personal and global levels. For many of us, change does not present as being easy, it might even bring up feelings of fear or the need to grasp harder and attempt to find more control. The truth is that change it the only thing you can really depend on. Change is the only constant - time is always changing, the times are always changing. And, this is a good thing. Things need to evolve, shift, blossom and fade. If they didn’t we’d be stuck in a perpetually stagnant state. We are a world that depends on change to survive. In order to embrace this consistency of change, we must find ways - and courage - to accept this flow and dive in time and time again. This is where the gift of a pause becomes truly powerful.  

When we pause, we are able to see a bit more clearly where the changes may be leading us. We are able to detach and look objectively at the experiences - 'good' and 'bad.'  We are able to lean into the unknown, because we open ourselves the clarity of the moment in front of us and find our footing. We serve ourselves by opening up to the flow instead of resisting. Ultimately, we transform our relationship to the changes in life - realizing that change is what allows us to grow and truly be.

I invite you, in these last few days of 2015 to take a moment to pause. Take a moment to reflect on the changes in the past year. Tap into the lessons and be grateful for everything you have experienced - the 'good' and the 'bad.' Cultivate openness and excitement for the changes and shifts that will come in 2016. And then, for a few more moments just be still.


Try it:

Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, stop. Take a deep breath. Listen to the sounds around you. Feel the rhythms of your body. For a few more seconds - allow yourself to simply be.  Close your eyes and open them. Take another deep breath.

Now, do what you need to do for you.  

Flow with the shifts. Flow with the changes. Celebrate in ways that fill you up and bring you peace of heart, mind and body. And continue time and time again to give yourself the gift of the Pause.