Every night, my journal prompts me to look back at my day and write down two things I wish I would have done differently. I quickly noticed a common denominator at the end of each day. Nine times out of ten it has something to do with a Reaction I had, whether it was reacting to a person, traffic or construction, or simply reacting to my surroundings.
When we react it is often a decision made quickly, subconsciously and is often a result of our emotions.
To respond simply means we are giving ourselves space between the situation and our interpretation. This allows us time to, yes consider our emotions, but not be led blindly by them in order to make a peaceful response in which all can benefit.
In my opinion, this is something if managed well, can lead to better attitudes which is followed by a happier life.
Am I an expert? Hell no! Am I learning and adapting to work on this daily? Absolutely!
Here are some ways that have helped me to minimize my reactions on a daily basis that maybe can help you!
Awareness: this is THE most important thing I have done in order to minimize my reactive behavior. Simply being aware of something I need to work on has single handedly helped me leaps and bounds.
Setting an intention: Every morning I set an intention for the day. Whether it is to find some inner peace, have a productive day, spend quality time with family, or find time for Yoga. Setting my intention has been a critical aspect in making me aware of what I want my day to look like! In turn, I am more likely to take the space needed between a situation and my response.
Being present: Truly listen. If I am in a conversation and am only thinking of what I’m going to say next, I’m not actually listening and therefore am unable to respond with intention and support in the situation.
Here are some tools that have helped me dig into things I need to grow and work on, all while taking small steps towards a better version of myself than the one I was yesterday!
- Cozi— FREE App that is huge for the healthy communication within my marriage. No surprises= No upset reactions! Example: who will need to drop off/pick up kids due to schedule conflicts; it’s all in this app! We go over our week every Sunday to eliminate any surprises of who has what going on so there aren’t last minute arguments and reactions!
- Five minute journal— my guide to all things happy! Intent, gratefulness, affirmations and reflection. In less than ＭＩＮＵＴＥS a day! Easiest thing to stick to period!
- Jesus Calling— Doesn’t tie directly into this segment, however has helped me gain perspective first thing in the morning and last thing before I hit the pillow at night. No matter how “Faithful” you are, this book has been life altering for me every single day!
Maybe this is something you have mastered, and to you I tip my hat! For the remaining 99.9% of us let’s all take one breath in through the nose, and out through the mouth. Let us find our space before we r e s p o n d!
Links to tools:
The Five Minute Journal: A Happier You in 5 Minutes a Day https://www.amazon.com/dp/0991846206/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_3JSMBb0N4Z9S1
Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence https://www.amazon.com/dp/1400318130/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_fLSMBbPCA7JRG
Cozi Family Organizer by Cozi