React or Respond
At times, life can come at us pretty quickly. Before we know it, everything has changed. The solid ground we once trusted, appears to be falling away before our very eyes, causing us to question the choices we have made. How do we adjust to these changes?
Do we react or do we respond? Is there a difference between the two? I would think when we react, we act without much thought and the situation then controls us. Although to respond, we search within ourselves to find the best course of action, then move forward with this wisdom.
The difference between react and respond will determine the outcome of the situation. I remember before I understood the importance of remaining centered, when I would react without much thought or consideration to the end result. As you would imagine my behavior actually made the situation worst.
I didn’t know that there were positive lessons hidden within the experience. By reacting, I limited the emotional growth the lesson was meant to teach me. In a way, my reaction blocked my ability to grow and benefit from the event.
I have since learned that there is a brief moment between thought and action. When we react we ignore this moment and miss any positive guidance that may help us make the situation less volatile. By taking advantage of this brief moment in time, we can center ourselves, and choose how we want to respond.
Think of reaction as an action with no thought, we just react. Although to respond we think first, then respond. There may appear to be a slim difference between the two courses of action, but when we look closely we will notice that the outcome will be very different.
How will we know if we are reacting or responding? The answer will be in the outcome of the situation. How did things work out, and how do we feel about our behavior? This will require an honest self-examination, because reviewing our behavior can make us uncomfortable.
Yet if we take advantage of this brief moment and choose our thoughts, words, and actions wisely, we do not have to be concerned with our behavior. We have acted in a way that aligns with our true self.
As we practice using this moment in time for our benefit, we will become accustomed to knowing what the right course of action should be. At this point react and respond will meld together. It is here where we will know what to do, and how to act in a fraction of a second.
Similar to learning a new habit, learning to trust our ability to respond will take time, and a willingness to observe our behavior after-the-fact. If we can stand tall when we review our actions, we will know we have chosen to respond, rather than be embarrassed by our reaction. This awareness is where the growth will take place.
As we go through our day, putting these lessons into practice, notice if we are reacting or responding. This way when the ground below our feet begins to shift, we will have the confidence to respond with wisdom and grace.
Is it possible to take a moment, and respond rather than react? Let me know what you think. Leave a question or comment below, I’m always open to exploring the subject further.
Here is some exciting news!! I’ll be hosting an in-person writing workshop titled “Creating a Sacred Space” Thursday, February 23, from 6:30-8:00 pm at the Mandala Collective, 211 F ST. in Salida CO.
The intention of the workshop is to guide you through the process of creating a sacred space with the purpose of communicating with your higher self.
The cost is $20.00. To register go to the events section of my website, paulhudonauthor.com If you have any questions please feel free to reach out to me. firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to purchase a copy of my books, “Your Inner Guidance, The Path to Discovering Your True Happiness,” or “A Complete Life, Discovering Your Authentic Self,” and you live in my area, you can buy them at Salida Books in Salida, or The Book Nook in Buena Vista. Or reach out to me, and I’ll sign a copy for you.
You can also buy them through Amazon, as an eBook or paperback, by clicking on the link. Please feel free to leave a review.
In the February issue of Conscious Shift Magazine you will find my article, “Thoughts Create”
Do we realize our thoughts create our world?
Click the link to read more.
Check out Conscious Shift Magazine, a great resource for guidance and inspiration.
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I would like to thank you for joining me on this wonderful adventure called life.
Peace and Well-Being, Paul
Copyright Paul Hudon2023
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