The Power of the Pause

You were made to have a rhythm to your life. Like a good song, it should have a mixture of highs and lows, of busyness and rest. If the beat of your drum has been like a modern version of the song “Wipeout”, then you’re underestimating the most powerful part of your life…the pauses.

via woodleywonderworks @ Flickr Creative Commons

via woodleywonderworks @ Flickr Creative Commons

As I sat in the stands at Lucus Oil Stadium watching band after band give their best at the state finals, it was obvious that every costume, every note, every step had been critically analyzed and practiced to perfection before arriving at this place. These were the best bands in the state.

While they had to take many things into consideration to make a state-championship performance, the part that caught my attention and moved me emotionally were the bands that understood the power of the pause.

The music, the dancing, the marching would all be drawing you in as excitement begins to build. At just the right moment…SILENCE.

It was the pause in the song that made the crescendo that much more powerful; that moment of silence before the entire field erupted with energy and excitement.

As a leader, you make lots of decisions each day. You plan ahead, you predict, you gather and analyze, you have meetings, along with many, many other things. These are the “notes” that you play in the song of your life. There are high notes and good decisions. There are low notes and bad times. But have you ever considered that your most powerful moments lie in the pause?

Instead of doing the talking, what if you chose to listen?

Instead of never using a personal day, what if you took that day off?

What if you closed your office door for a bit instead of everyone having free access to you at any time?

Do you really need to respond to that person’s self-perceived “emergency” right now?

A lot can be said with words and actions. But there can be a lot more impact with the silent pauses that you take.

QUESTION: What are you doing to make sure you’re utilizing the power of the pause? Leave your advice in the comments below. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

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