Hitting Pause: Power of Checking In

Life can feel like a constant sprint these days. Between work deadlines, social obligations, and the general hum of daily responsibilities, it’s easy to get swept up in the current and forget to… check-in. But pausing, reflecting, and connecting with ourselves and others can be a game-changer for our well-being and relationships.

What does checking in really mean? It’s more than just saying, “Hey, how are you?” It’s about creating space for genuine connection, active listening, and understanding. Here’s why checking in is so important:

For Yourself:

  • Self-awareness: Regular check-ins allow you to identify your emotions, needs, and priorities. Are you feeling stressed? Overwhelmed? Recognizing these feelings early on can help you manage them effectively.
  • Course correction: Sometimes, we’re on autopilot, heading in a direction we don’t even realize. Checking in lets you assess if your current path aligns with your values and goals. Are you doing what truly matters to you?
  • Mindfulness: Taking a moment to breathe, reflect, and appreciate the present can do wonders for your mental well-being. Checking in fosters gratitude and helps you savor the good moments.

For Others:

  • Strengthening bonds: Showing genuine interest in someone’s life strengthens your connection and shows that you care. It creates a safe space for vulnerability and deepens trust.
  • Offering support: Checking in allows you to identify if someone is struggling and offer support before issues escalate. A listening ear and a helping hand can make a world of difference.
  • Building community: Regular check-ins create a sense of belonging and shared experience. They foster empathy and understanding, creating a more supportive and positive environment.

How to Check-In:

  • Start with yourself: Schedule regular “me-time” for journaling, meditation, or simply observing your thoughts and feelings. Be honest with yourself about your needs and priorities.
  • Ask the right questions: Instead of “How are you?” go deeper with questions like “What’s been on your mind lately?” or “How are you feeling about…?” Actively listen without judgment.
  • Make it a habit: Integrate “checking in” into your daily routine. Ask your partner about their day, connect with a friend over coffee, or schedule regular team check-ins at work.
  • Be present: Put away distractions when checking in. Make eye contact, give your full attention, and show genuine interest in the other person’s response.

Remember: Checking in is not just a one-time event. It’s an ongoing practice that cultivates self-awareness, strengthens relationships, and fosters a more mindful and connected life. So, take a deep breath, hit pause, and start checking in. You might be surprised at its positive impact on yourself and the people around you.

Now it’s your turn! Share your tips and experiences with “checking in” in the comments below. Let’s build a community of connection and support!

#Connect #IAACE

3 replies
  1. Tara Lisciandro
    Tara Lisciandro says:

    Checking in is a super important and powerful practice to establish – and teach others too!
    There are so many ways to practice, but it’s a matter of finding what works for you.. There are things that can be done in just a few moments to help relax and focus our brains, and other practices that take a few mins or longer…
    1 – senses: find 5 things in your immediate surroundings that you can see, 4 things you can hear, 3 things you can feel, 2 things you can smell, 1 think you can taste
    2 – trace your hand on a flat surface, trace up and down (like you did as a kid when you make turkeys 🙂 , trace with your pointer finger and breathe in and out as you trace up and down (on a table or your lap)
    3 – take 3 detox breathes: breathe in through your nose, hear and feel your breath, then out through your mouth, open your mouth and stick out your tongue – sort of funny, but helpful 🙂
    Keep up the pause practices daily!
    -Tara Lisciandro, MBSR


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