The Power of a 4-Second Pause

December 28, 2022

The Power of a 4-Second Pause



The act of pausing, repeating back what we hear in a positive way, and letting go of any agenda is known as reflecting. By actively choosing to do this, we encourage our kids to not just recall information but to be aware of what they learned — what was interesting, how they feel about it, and what they can do to build on the experience. When we pause, we’re telling our kids that we’re open to hearing anything else they have to say. 


The simple technique of pausing makes our job as parents easier. Because when we can take the time to enact a four-beat pause, we: 


  • don’t need to have all the answers 
  • don’t have to be perfect 
  • don’t jump to conclusions 
  • don’t answer the question we think our kids are asking 
  • answer only the question he or she is asking 
  • give our preschooler time to gather his or her thoughts and verbalize them. 


One of the greatest benefits of the pause is that it gives the child a chance to process new, confusing, or difficult information, and fully understand it. When we pause, we also give ourselves a chance to process the situation and formulate thoughtful responses. 


The pause is the tool, but it’s how we use the tool that makes all the difference. We need to be conscious of our body language and what we say when we interact. Being intentional with the pause brings positive outcomes for our kids and ourselves. 



Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.

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