However your day is, you can be powerful in each and every moment
Access short moments of calm that allow you to cut through the chaotic momentum of your day. A powerful pause allows you to do this.
Wherever you are, you can ground yourself and tap into a deeper place of wisdom and calm. This empowers you when you may be feeling out of control with your own thoughts or surrounding events.
It’s easy to take a present moment pause, with a couple of conscious breaths, but the remembering to do it isn’t so easy!
Sharon Salzberg suggests you create mini traditions for yourself throughout the day. These form a frequency when you repeat them, so they become new habits, the kind of habits you want!
In any given moment you can make the choice how you will behave – now that’s powerful!
7 Powerful Tips
The Bathroom Walk
Each time you walk to the bathroom, bring your awareness to your walking, being present with your body. Notice your posture and slow down your pace if you are rushing. This is a great way to connect in with yourself on the move.
2. Ring! Ring!
Let the phone ring 3 times before answering so that you can become aware of your breath before you speak. And notice if you immediately grab your phone in response to a text message. Breathe slowly. Is this demand on your time necessary in such a frantic way?
3. Slow Mail
Once you have typed your email, pause, take 3 deep mindful breaths, before pressing ‘send’. In that time you might decide it wasn’t worded correctly or that you’ve forgotten something important.
4. Work Meetings
At the start of any meeting – whether it’s with one other person or a whole room of people (online or in-person):
- Rest your attention on your breath
- Set an intention for yourself and quietly think something like –
- ‘I am strong and filled with courage’
- or ‘I am calm and at ease’
- Create a phrase that you wish to embody for this meeting
5. Talk Talk
When you are in conversation – embody a powerful pause before you respond.
Remember that during this exchange, by listening fully, you will learn more than when you are talking (where you are expressing what you already know!)
6. Agree to Disagree?
When someone expresses an opinion which is very different from your own, become aware of your own reaction. Pause, and remember all expressions of opinion are, as Eckhart Tolle describes them, ‘abstractions in the mind’.
Don’t get caught up in a reactionary response! (Not always possible, is it?) Be aware that you have a choice in your response, you may remember to do this next time it happens. It feels more powerful when you can stay even-tempered and open-hearted.
7. On the Road
When you get in to your car, here is a short reminder from Thich Nhat Hanh to say to yourself before you head off:
Before starting the car,
I know where I am going.
The car and I are one.
If the car goes fast,
I go fast.
There’s nothing like driving a car to reveal to you what emotions you’re carrying with you; notice how easily you rise to anger or distraction! Be curious, stay present and relax your hands on the wheel.
Create your own Present Moments of Power
You can also create your own present moments of power.
Notice the things you do regularly in your day, and include powerful pauses of awareness with your body and your breathing.
Your power resides in your ability to stop automatic thinking and automatic behaviours. To contact your deeper wiser you rather than the shallow reactionary you.
Those calm, deep breaths you give yourself, help your brain to reduce the body’s stress response, and maintain a steady and rested manner. And from this balanced, calm place, you are better positioned to be considered and powerful.
It’s your choice! You can be powerful!
The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Real Happiness by Sharon Salzberg
Peace is Every Step and The Miracle of Mindfulness by Thich Nhat Hanh
Yvette Jane – Mindfulness & Meditation Guide
This post updated since first published in October 2015