Practising the Pause.
I never used to be good at communication, not in the more loving productive sense. If you wanted a screaming match and a couple of huffy slamming of doors and objects on countertops – I was your dude. No feelings ever got aired – they just ate away inside, turning everything toxic.
In the last few months, I have been practicing a super simple technique called “practising the pause” and even though I’ve known of this technique for quite a while, I’ve never integrated it into my spiritual practice (and boy do I wish I had done this sooner).
This technique has completely changed the way communication has happened between me and others – not just in person, but in phone calls, texts and social media. You name it.
When people touch your “inner thorn” – a trigger which causes emotional/mental pain – the mind’s first response is one of protection, and in many cases if you are having a disagreement with someone, the moment they touch that thorn; your shields go up and you’re in full on protection mode. This is highly likely to be an anger response (‘Well, you hurt me so I’m going to hurt you back’) but what if we could step out of that response by breathing?
That’s the pause.
By letting a moment pass before formulating a response and focusing on your breathing you are enabling yourself to choose a more loving response. Even if you use this pause to say “I’m going to go for a walk, we shall talk when I get back” it’s giving you the ability to remove yourself from that energy and stop you from acting from a place of impulse and hurt.
Communicating in this way has improved the quality of my relationships by not only giving me space to communicate effectively, but also by giving others the ability to explain why they are hurting.
If we practise this technique and work on our communication – we can remove that inner thorn and work from a heart centred space in everything we do.
So give it a go- just remember to breathe.