React or Respond? How to reprogram old habits and liberate your relationships
Did you upset someone today? Did someone upset you today?
Its quite a common occurrence that we do this to each other ....and quite often on a daily basis.....and quite often with our nearest and dearest! It's not like we set out to do it, but events occur that are seemingly out of our control that send us down a pathway to conflict, hurt and ultimately suffering.
So why do we keep doing it? Well, it all has to do with our programmed reactions. Our hard-wiring in the brain, our preset buttons for "how to react" when our unconscious needs are not met.
Reset the Dial
To reset out 'reaction dial' we have to bring awareness to the game. Here is my 3 step mindful process to get you out of your reactivity and into mindful responsive mode:
Set a clear intention in the morning that you will observe yourself to realise or become aware of when you begin to 'react' to a certain situation or person.
Choose on the moment, to stop reacting and instead ask yourself why you are feeling an emotional charge around this. Take note of the insights you get and be prepared to be amazed at what you learn about yourself.
Once you get an insight into the reason behind your emotional charge, you will have a greater capacity to respond to the situation with greater clarity and focus that is solution not problem based. The response should be twofold:
i) an inner response to yourself - draw on your own inner coach to satisfy whatever need to have in the moment to feel better; and
ii) an outer response with those involved to speak clearly your needs and expectations without blame or judgement and seek clarity of intention.
When we make a conscious effort to prune our inbuilt neural pathways by keeping a watchful eye on our habitual responses, we literally re-wire them. We reprogram our old habits and replace them with a more life promoting response.