The art of pausing has lost some of its familiarity in this age of day to day electronic dialoguing. A pause can only exist in the present moment. It gives space and breadth between our thoughts. It gives the mind a chance to settle. Have you ever thought to yourself, gee I wish I had said "blank" instead! 'Giving pause' before acting helps us to see the picture in front of us more clearly.
One of the ways I practice pausing is while driving. The easiest prompt happens when I arrive at a STOP sign. If a driver proceeds out of turn at a 4-way stop, I am given a bonus opportunity to pause!! If someone cuts me off, or if I am sitting in bumper to bumper traffic not moving, or if the driver behind me honks their horn out of frustration, again I am granted the opportunity for a pause. As one can see there are endless potential prompts while behind the wheel. I can also enjoy pausing while proceeding with caution!
Then there is pausing for the sake of pleasure. This practice is a form of portable meditation. It allows me to consciously return to my body whenever I chose. It is often accompanied in my being aware of my breath, particularly in the moments leading to the smooth completion of exhaling. It quiets my mind and lets my body take center stage.
Pausing is a skill I first learned about as a Trager student. It gives the receiver (client) a chance to fully feel and integrate the effect of the positive touch they received, and for the giver (practitioner) time to re-settle into a state of active relaxation before continuing on with more touch.
I can’t imagine what life would be like without my freedom to pause, it nourishes me deeply.