I initially became interested in mindfulness practice because I wanted to be a better parent. Specifically, I didn’t want to be so reactive to my daughters’ fits and challenging moments. I found myself snapping at the girls when I wanted to be calm and patient. I was grumpy when I wanted to be kind. I knew I wanted to be a different parent, but I wasn’t sure how to get there. I kept reading websites and books telling me to take a time out or count to ten when I was feeling frustrated, but the problem was that I didn’t even realize I was upset until I was already in the middle of my own little tantrum.

Mindfulness practice, both formal meditation and informal practice, has helped create a pause in which I can become aware. I am able to step out of my own agitation and into the present moment, into how I am feeling and what I am doing. In that space, I can make a better choice.

4 Comments to
STOP: Creating a Mindful Pause

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  1. Insiteful and has inspired me. We in 12 Step Fellowships have a phrase, “pause when agitated” …unfortunately, we in recovery often press Fast Forward instead. After 5 years sober, I discovered that there were times when I would snap at those I cared about. We have The Serenity Prayer as another tool. All of these are grand until the the you know what hits the fan and emotion overtakes reason.

    I have recently returned to church…in my case I chose Unity. They seem to incorporate eastern philosophy into what they call, “Practical Christianity”. It seems to really work. In my chosen field of substance abuse intervention and treatment, one of the most successful treatments for trauma, etc. is C.B.T. And D.B.T.; which both incorporate Mindfulness I believe.

    Anyway, thanks for the post…it reminded me of the Nissan commercial where they guy gets a car beep just before he’s about to make a mistake…couldn’t we all use one of those?…lol.

    All my best to you and your family.

    • Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I wish you all the best.

  2. Carla,

    You do such great work. Here’s a video to the STOP practice.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EiuTpeu5xQc&feature=plcp

    Enjoy,

    Elisha Goldstein, PhD

    • Thanks, Elisha. This is great!

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