Reinventing Retirement

Learning to Pause

One thing that I have really been pondering the past few months is the difference between an all or nothing approach to life and what might be called a middle ground.  When I first decided to stop working full time in TV I thought that I would devote ALL my time and energy to yoga.  And of course the minute I decided to do so I started to get calls to work freelance in TV.  My first reaction was to say no but then I realized that this was not being true to myself. I wanted to be able to follow my heart on a yogic path and STILL get satisfaction out of a career that had been filled with many wonderful and rewarding experiences. I found that actually I could do both and find  balance.

Finding balance in life

What helped me do this?  I think a lot of it was to pause and lose the judgmental attitude I had created about “going backwards” to my old life.  In fact I have found a whole new world with the type of directing I always loved, working with people who are a joy and truly appreciate what I bring to every job.

This ability to pause is equally valuable in my yoga practice.  Now before I attempt an asana that I find a bit too challenging in its full expression, I PAUSE and consider how I might modify it and inhabit it fully. When I started to meditate I thought that I was a failure if I couldn’t sit for 20 minutes EVERY day and really go DEEP.  Now I find that even if I can just sit for 5 minutes and breathe and clear the chatter of my mind I feel more centered and calm.

What if we all found this ability to pause in our everyday lives?  Perhaps before reacting immediately to a situation we could breathe and take a moment.  Maybe we wouldn’t judge ourselves so harshly for not doing everything BY THE BOOK or by some set of rules we have created for ourselves.

Food for thought… “The simple act of reflecting, the simple act of pausing to consider, to reason, can have an impact.” Dalai Lama




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About the Author: Ann Benjamin is a 30 year veteran of ABC NEWS where she was the director for programs such as World News, Nightline, 20/20, and major special events. In the fall of 2010 she followed her heart and left that world to pursue her dream of teaching yoga. In July 2011 she was certified by Laughing Lotus NYC. She now divides her time between her passion for yoga and those media projects which she finds interesting and rewarding. Check out her website at

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