Thursday, April 14, 2011


Are you hungry?  Angry?  Lonely?  Or tired?  If yes, then it is time to stop. 

I first read about using the acronym H (hungry) A (angry) L (lonely) T (tired) to deal with stress when I was in my early 20's.  I have developed the habit of thinking "HALT" to help me to stop.

A definition of "halt" is to pause or stop.  When we HALT, we pause, regroup, collect ourselves in order to proceed with improved clarity, kindness, and credibility.  It is hard to stop. 

Stopping to eat and rest takes care of our physical needs.  Stopping to deal with our anger and loneliness takes care of our emotional needs.  We are more inclined to feel in control of ourselves and to avoid drama.  For your own sake, stop. 

When our basic needs are taken care of, we are less likely to lash out at others.  We are more inclined to see the situation clearly, to be patient, and to be concerned for all involved.  For the sake of others, stop.