Interrupt the Impulse

Flowers in Black River Falls, Wisconsin, July 2023

“Practice the Pause”…many say this lately. Have you heard of it?

It is taking a moment and a deep breath when we find ourselves amidst a challenge, conflict or distraction.

It is an interruption from fulfilling the immediate impulse that our brain thinks we want. 

Impulses can show up in toxic forms of reactions. Yelling, judging, shaming, shopping, eating, drinking, hurting…you fill in the blank for that “comforting” coping mechanism.

These can be difficult behaviors to change. While they feel good or even helpful in the short term, they can heighten our long term stress and anxiety. It can be a vicious cycle.

Similar to toxic substances, stress and anxiety can lower our inhibition to make the healthy choices we need. 

Pausing to interrupt an impulsive thought allows us to “inscape” into the present moment, rather than escape. Perhaps this is because we cannot breathe in the past and we cannot breathe in the future. We can only breathe in the here and now.  Interrupting our impulses with breathing practices a new go-to response. If pausing is practiced on a regular basis, even when we are not engulfed within a challenging impulse, it can help us when we areBreathing within an itty-bitty break is not an arduous task, but sometimes it can feel difficult to fit it in. If we create time to break and breathe with intention, frequently enough, it can come to mind in the moment when we need to make a conscious choice to change our thoughts and/or our behavior.

Whether it is an urge, an impulse, a desire, or simply an irritation, we can learn to breathe and move through it.

It is within the discomfort of changing an old habit, pattern and routine, that we can advance to enhance our life with more harmony. 

This is a non-paid endorsement, encouraging you to recognize where an interruption may be beneficial for you to achieve more peace, or even progress, on your path.

These pictures were taken in my home state of Wisconsin this summer when I paused to take in the beauty of nature. Interrupting my busy schedule to be outside helps refuel my soul.

More on breathing into a more peaceful state of mind:

What if Nothing is Wrong?

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