[Classic post from 11-1-14]
A friend told me about another friends reaction, or rather, overreaction to a small event and then promptly created a new policy that seemed unreasonable to all except this person.
I like Paul Coelho’s quote about reason where he says, “Don’t allow your mind to tell your heart what to do. The mind gives up so easily.” Well, no matter what, reactions like that are all fear based and that usually not only doesn’t work out, it often works in the opposite direction.
It’s so easy for us on the receiving end of such a reactive outburst and immediate change in overall policy to have a reaction ourselves, and it is invariably in the opposite direction, or as Victor Hugo puts it, “a boat which is going against the current.” In this case, now everyone is. Reason is out the window in the face of reaction.
What a great opportunity this is to pause and consider. What has been going on in the life of that person who reacted so poorly to such a small thing? That person could very easily have all kinds of issues, emotions running around, feeling overwhelmed, out of sorts, maybe even having family issues. Now, if we all in our own reaction row upstream too, we are all in fear and distress. The only way out is downstream.
A long time ago my wife and I went to Marriage Encounters, which is an event where couples work out issues in new ways to help solidify their relationship. A big part of that is writing out feelings, then reading it aloud and the receiver is to listen without judgment. Couples are encouraged to continue to write to each other long after the event. It is quite effective in my opinion.
So I suggested to my friend that she write out her thoughts and how that reaction is creating problems now and in the future and express how she feels about it and do it with love and not fear. I hope she does because I know that this is a very powerful tool. Writing allows you to think through things without so much emotion and certainly without any reactive components from another as is experienced in all verbal confrontations.
Cooler heads will always prevail. Understanding and a loving approach will be the real power.
“It’s Not The Situation. . . It’s Your Reaction To The Situation.” — Robert Conklin
Spread Some Joy Today–by finding the love in you to understand how others may be feeling and reacting.