Responding vs Reacting

Summer is in full swing and the 4th of July holiday is now past.  Many of you may be on vacation or perhaps back at your desk in the office.  I would like to talk about the difference in these two words in the headline.  Do you see them up there? 

What does it mean to: Respond to something?  You may respond to an invitation to a party or a wedding.  That’s one way.  Another way would be to respond to an offense, a sentence, a decision or an act.  One ignites feeling of joy and the other ignites feelings of anger and disappointment.  If you saw a child put his hand near a stove top which was hot, you immediately spring into action without thought, but to rescue.  This response can be positive or it can be negative. 

What does it mean to: React to something?  You may react to something without giving what you do any thought at all.  It is as if you are on autopilot.  You do not think, you just “do”.   We default to old habits.  Our bodies become tense and stressed.  We sometimes become hyper-vigilant or hyper-active.  We may also view the entire scenario as one with “no options”.  Again here, this reaction can be positive or it can be negative.

I have an insight into these two words and I am wondering if you would just come along with me here for a moment or two? 

When we allow down and think before we respond or we react we are able to:

1.  See things more clearly

2.  We create a momentary disconnect from the “emotion” attached to the event in order to do a quick check-in internally

3.  We are able to really be in-the-moment and present and clear

4.  We are able to see multiple options appear before us before we respond or we react.

Where do you spend most of your waking hours? 



What are the consequences for each?

Which one is more draining physically?

When we push “pause” we have a much better chance of an outcome which is one which we can live with.

Push “Pause” freely this week!