The Power of Pause
I once shared my story of stopping all business activity for 60 days.
Almost immediately replies started streaming in. Emails from Germany, Australia, Great Britain. Mississippi, Virginia, Washington, California, New York, Ohio, Kentucky, Oregon... too many to mention here.
It hit a nerve, in a very good way. And made me consider this question.
What is the Power of Pause?
On March 10th in the US, life was "normal". Go, go, go -- tons of appointments, gatherings and get togethers. Ambitious plans -- oh my, were they audacious!
We were fully embracing the concept of 2020 being the "year of perfect 20/20 vision".
March 11 (my milestone birthday, that's how I remember), the WHO declared a global pandemic. Honestly, at the time I didn't quite understand what that meant.
And with my normal sunny disposition, I began a process of learning more and steeling myself for a few months of sacrifice.
At this point, I'm about five months into the launch of my new consulting practice. With the new uncertainty reigning, promising opportunities began to dry up.
And just like a five year old playing in the pool on hot summer day, I sooooo resisted stopping.
I instinctually wanted to press on. Ignore the circumstances. Keep going.
Mid-April, I also knew this was the wrong decision for me.
Comparison lead to resentment. My heart hardened, my spirit darkened.
One day, an inner question came to mind: Winston, as CEO of your business, what would you like to do?
The answer was crystal clear.
Without an open heart and open hands, true and loving service is... Impossible.
The PAUSE was born.
I gave myself permission to wind down existing responsibilities and then unplug for 30 days.
...And I can hear some of you right now, I cannot AFFORD to do that...
You may be pleasantly surprised.
During my pause, not only were my financial "needs" addressed, I also retired substantial personal debt through a series of small steps and unexpected provision.
Was it tough? - Yes. Did I have to make difficult decisions? - Yes. Did I want to abandon this folly and get back to work? -Yes, at times.
But, this pause was not a "nice to have", it was a MUST.
And I would stay in PAUSE until my spirit felt lighter, freer.
(For me, it ended up being 60 days). What did the Pause make possible?
Imagine for a moment -- being free to create ANYTHING, without expectation.
Letting go of the need for recognition, some mythical metric of success.
From that space, anything is POSSIBLE. This is the Power of Pause.
Without clearing our mind chatter and expectations, we fall short of our potential impact in this world.
It's kind of like being a first time trapeze artist. Grab the bar, begin to swing out. Holding on so tight that we'd swear it's about to break into pieces right in our hands.
That's NOT flying.
That's a miserable place to be. High above the crowd, staying in one place -- back and forth. Screwing up courage and then never going anywhere.
Friend, we only FLY when we finally let go.
My question to you, whether or not you are ready to pause.
What will you let go of next month, so you can truly fly?
Reply privately to me. I'm curious to see what decision comes up for you.
P.S. In the next post, let's discover the Power of Purpose.