In football, teams can come out of the second half and begin their comeback.
They had 15 minutes to pause, reflect, and regroup.
The same can be applied to projects and our careers.
I have taken two major pauses recently. A pause in learning German and a pause in my blogging.
One was a poor decision, the other might turn out to be good. That is yet to be seen.
A pause can take two forms. It can provide the necessary time to regroup and reflect. Then, go out and crush the second half.
Or, it can kill momentum.
The trick is knowing when it is time to take a pause and when it is time to push forward. Enduring the difficult road ahead.
Taking a pause that loses momentum
A pause that loses momentum is a start-stop problem. In sports, a long pause in training can leave you out of shape.
A long pause in sales, such as a longer than normal vacation, can leave you the amount of time you were gone behind. It could also be more than that. It’s a gap in filling the sales funnel.
Or, when learning a language, it’s use it or lose it. A long pause causes us to forget words. A need for remedial work.
Taking a pause to regroup
A pause to regroup, on the other hand, can bring life back to achieving goals.
A productive pause, such as a sabbatical, can create much-needed rest. An ability to clear our mind. Renewing our sense of purpose.
This pause is like the football team that comes back from a 25-point deficit in the second half. Ultimately winning the game.
Coming back after a pause
The most difficult part of any pause is coming back after the break. Starting again.
In many projects, starting the first time is difficult. Not to mention having to do it twice.
When considering a pause, it might be, like anything, worth asking why. A pause for the right reasons can move us forward.
On the other hand, a pause because things are difficult can do more harm than good.
Not all pauses are created equal. We should not take the decision to take a pause lightly.