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Subtle Signals October 5, 2012

Posted by nrhatch in Health & Wellness, Humor, Life Balance, Mindfulness.

Aswemovethroughourdaysweeksmonthsyearswe  arepromptedwithsignalstellinguswhentopauseand  whentocometoafullstop.

These subtle signals, like punctuation on the printed page, help us catch our breath.

And give our eyes a much needed break from texting and cyber surfing.

If not for pauses, we’d be running full tilt from first light to twilight, rather like Kate’s nephew, Big Al, and his Shrewsday Manor sidekick, Mr. Clive Bond.

And, let’s be honest here, we are far too old for that type of nonsense.

When we act like the Energizer Bunny’s long lost cousin, we deplete our batteries, fry our circuits,  and exhaust ourselves in short order.

And that’s assuming things are running smoothly.

When they aren’t, we’re apt to blow a fuse as we fly off the handle and flip our lid (or the bird) (or both).

Pauses are important.

Pauses keep us on even keel.  They prevent us from running out of steam.  Or, worse still, de-railing.  They help us avoid head-on collisions and crash landings.

If you are “too busy” to take a break, you are too busy not to take a break.

So, don’t just do something . . . sit there.
Breathe.  Relax.  Repeat.

Aah . . . that’s better!

How do you unwind when you feel like a giant ball of frayed twine, all tied up in knots, racing down a steep incline with no end in sight?

Do you remember to apply the brakes?
Or do you wait for a crash to stop your forward momentum?

Related post:  Daily Prompt ~ On The Edge


1. suzicate - October 5, 2012

Pauses are the best parts of life…it’s when we breathe it in!

nrhatch - October 5, 2012

Without time to pause and reflect, life becomes a bit blurry.

2. Don - October 5, 2012

It took me a long time to learn how to apply the brakes learning from a lot of painful consequences. I must say that I’m far better at pausing now, but can still get a little carried away at times. I unwind by walking. may seem strange, but I love to walk. There’s just something about walking.

nrhatch - October 5, 2012

Walking is one of the best ways I know to clear the head, exercise the body, and eliminate accumulated stress.

This summer, I forgot to apply the brakes. I crashed. Enough said.

3. Piglet in Portugal - October 5, 2012

When I’m wound up like a coiled spring…Mr Piglet has this effect on me sometimes – I take a glass of wine down to the waters edge, sit on the shoreline and look out across the ocean and wonder how long it would take to swim to the other side. (I have a vivid imagination)

nrhatch - October 5, 2012

That sounds rather relaxing, PiP. Much more so than actually attempting the swim! 😉

4. kateshrewsday - October 5, 2012

You’ve got that right, Nancy! I have that helter-skelter feeling right now…..I just have to figure out how to slow down. I am managing to build in one exploring day out to myself a week, though, which is making a huge difference.
Thank you for the link. I am honoured 🙂 Lovely to see Al and Clive Bond appearing here in Spirit Lights The Way!

nrhatch - October 5, 2012

One day a week all to yourself is probably a good investment in your sanity, Kate.

As this post unfolded, Al and Clive Bond appeared front and center in my mind ~ they exhibit the perfect level of activity for “younguns” . . . but we can’t keep up that pace as the decades roll on by.

5. colonialist - October 5, 2012

Like the famous quote about the most impressive thing in music: ‘No music’. Sometimes a pause is the best part.
I wonder what the recreational equivalent of the Oxford comma would be – and extra break just to make sure?

nrhatch - October 5, 2012

Yes! I should have included that quote at the bottom . . . it is the times of “no music” that make the music truly resonate.

6. bluebee - October 5, 2012

I go out and smash that little white ball 🙂

nrhatch - October 6, 2012

9 out of 10 doctors recommend “smashing that little white ball” for stress relief . . . and you can usually see them at the course on Wednesdays and Saturdays. 😀

7. Patricia - October 5, 2012

I like to take a walk to get the pent up energies out. I also tell Teddy all my troubles. That works and he doesn’t judge or gossip about me.

nrhatch - October 6, 2012

Cats are great “listeners” when we want to unload our wheelbarrows of woe. Of course, they’re probably just pretending to listen . . . all the while wondering when we are going to tend to THEIR needs. 😉

Patricia - October 6, 2012

Like some people…

nrhatch - October 6, 2012

Bwahaha . . . you’ve got a point! 😀

8. sweetdaysundertheoaks - October 6, 2012

We just took a pause at a B&B in Kansas City and met CH’s brother and his wife for dinner. Even though we are retired life still can get stress-ie and just getting away from the norm is good. When I am feeling really stressed I hop in the car and take a trip to the kitty shelter and love me some kitties or I walk the Tiny Ten. Big stress, I usually crash eventually!

nrhatch - October 6, 2012

I thought my “crash and burn” days were over . . . until this year’s challenges pushed me right over the edge of the proverbial cliff.

I love the idea of visiting the shelter to play with the kittens. Of course, I’d want to take 1 or 2 or 17 home with me when I left. 😀

9. Pocket Perspectives - October 6, 2012

frayed wires and fried circuits here, for sure… I sure didn’t expect this. I seem to have gotten overwhelmed with keeping up with reading blogs…love them, but for some reason….I don’t know why….I’ve gotten really overwhelmed…so have been pausing. I think I’m having a hard time adjusting to this new, unfamiliar pace of life…not actually busy, but unfamiliar and a bit off center…pulling myself up from a tumble now….breathe, breathe, breathe…

nrhatch - October 6, 2012

Much of Ego’s identity is tied up in “what we do” . . . “when we don’t” Ego feels a bit off kilter, as if the rug’s been pulled out from under it.

For me, the best antidote for Ego dis-equilibrium is to sit down, breathe, and sense who I am at the core. Priorities restored, I remind Ego that “who we are” is so much more than what we do.

Pocket Perspectives - October 6, 2012

Nancy, I hadn’t realized how much “ego/identity” I derived from teaching/job/work…. I thought I was a bit past that, but it seems not. (and I had a bit in “blogger” too, but that seemed to go away too…don’t know why) I’m working on coming back to that “core” sense, but disequilibrium seems to be happening (now that’s interesting that you use that word…last week, I was so dizzy (just for one day though) that I couldn’t lift my head off the bed…my H had to stay home to take care of me/logistics….maybe the dis-equilibrium was literal?… now that’s interesting…sigh, work to do/progress to make on that one… new project.

nrhatch - October 6, 2012

When I stopped practicing law . . . I floundered for a bit. For 16 years my identity centered around the law. Losing that pivot point caused my axis to shift.

People don’t ask “who are you?” . . . they ask “what do you do?” I could no longer say “I am a litigator with PM&C.” The answer shifted to past tense ~ “I used to be a litigator.” Or I’d joke, “I’m a recovering attorney.” Or I’d speculate, “I’m trying to decide what to do with the rest of my life.”

After having had the answer for so many years, it was ODD.

BTW: I’ve had dizzy spells once or twice ~ if I bent over and stood up, the room danced merrily around my head. After some tests, the neurologist concluded that the ball bearings in my ears had shifted. When they refound a new equilibrium, I did too.

10. sufilight - October 6, 2012

Good reminder, Nancy! When I do things non-stop I feel very unbalanced, so I have learned to pause, catch my breath, relax, chill. Basically I have no choice as it affects my hearing.

nrhatch - October 6, 2012

Interesting point, Marie. I expect that sensory overload affects us all ~ we don’t hear, see, smell, taste, or touch as well if we are being pulled in 6 different directions at once. As a result, experiences evaporate without being noticed and we wonder where the day, week, month went.

Pausing gives us a chance to reconnect with all six senses . . . so that we flow more easily.

11. CMSmith - October 6, 2012

Since my kids have grown up and left home, I almost never feel hurried and hassled anymore. We’ve definitely slowed down the pace here. It’s quite nice, actually.

nrhatch - October 6, 2012

You seem to be moving at just the right pace . . . including when you’re Rolling With The River! 😀

12. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide - October 7, 2012

Best advice, albeit hard to follow: If you are “too busy” to take a break, you are too busy not to take a break.

nrhatch - October 7, 2012

Thanks, Greg. I expect the corollary is also true . . . when life feels like one big coffee break, it’s time to kick it up a notch! 😉

13. jannatwrites - October 9, 2012

I agree that pauses are important. My problem is catching up after the pauses 🙂

nrhatch - October 9, 2012

You aren’t alone, Janna. Lots of people need a vacation after cramming a vacation into an already over-booked calendar. 😉

We crank it up BEFORE & AFTER vacation (so we can take “time off”) . . . without lessening our workload one iota.

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