By Lynn Newman
Guest writer for Wake Up World
When we’ve got a hundred things on our plate, it’s super hard sometimes to know how and when to take a break. And even when on vacation or in the times we have to relax, it can be difficult to let go and free ourselves from tension. Our minds may continue without us, coming up with the next thing to put on our lists — jutting out to the future to keep up with all the many things we want or have to do.
But there’s a quick and simple tool you can use to instantly relieve yourself from tension… it’s this thing called stopping.
Taking a PAUSE.
By PAUSE, I don’t mean taking a Facebook break. A PAUSE means wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, no matter what you’re racing to – you stop.
Physically. Wherever you are. Stop.
And then …
Take in all the senses. Feel everything around you. The air. The noise. The smells. The people. Take it all in. And sense the sky, the clouds passing overhead and ALL its spaciousness.
I know this may sound trite. But it’s a big thing — bigger than we think.
All of a sudden, the busy life we’re in gets wider, more expansive and we can remember where we fit in the grand scheme of things.
We’re really quite small, when it comes down to it. And suddenly, our shoulders drop, we take a breath, and we experience relief.
You know how, when your flight is landing, and you’re flying over a highway, and on that highway is a car, and you see the car from your plane’s window? You think, There’s a person in that car … and that person is so, so small. And then you think, That person, rushing someplace in his car, stressing to make it to his destination, thinks that this whole, big wide world evolves around HIM.
Many times, when we’re stressed, we think it’s an emergency. Our fear — our flight or fight response — makes us believe we’re in danger, so our nervous system protects us by not letting us stop.
Giving ourselves this permission to stop might seem crazy — like there’s something wrong with us. But it’s not wrong. It’s necessary. And it’s effective. When we’re busy, what we need MOST is to open, not contract.
Get present by taking 10 seconds to stop. Feel your body. Get IN it. Allow yourself a moment to sense all of the spaciousness around you, even if it’s just for a second.
If you do this several times a day, or as often as you can remember, or need, you’ll find you become less caught up in this little thing called YOU and more fascinated by the expansiveness found in the world around you.
So, just for the sheer hell of it, can you take time each day this week to PAUSE and fully open your senses?
Wishing you a week free of tension!
Also by Lynn Newman:
- Self-Helpless – How To Stop Fixing Yourself
- Why Taking On Another Person’s Problem Is Bad For THEIR Health
- The Problem With Having a Spiritual Teacher (It Might Not Be What You Think)
About the author:
Lynn Newman has a Masters in Counseling Psychology, is a writer, painter and game creator (like The Game of Insight – An Interactive Way To Know Yourself and Create The Life You Want). She’s big on supporting others in having fun in their creative endeavors and unleashing the truest, free-est parts of you — to experience more joy, more purpose, and more passion in life.