Musin’ with Susan 9/29/20 – React or Respond?

“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” ― Viktor E. Frankl

One of the things I practice is responding instead of reacting. I’m quick to anger, quick to judge, quick to have (and express) an opinion.

I’ve found it’s much better for me—and others—when I take those few seconds to pause, to enter that space “between stimulus and response.”

When I pause, I have a choice about who I want to be. Do I want to be the Susan who spouts off, or do I want to be the Susan who is thoughtful and considerate and restrained in her responses? 

I know the answer. I’m sure you do, too.

I also know when I pause, when I enter that space between stimulus and response, I have the opportunity to respond in a way closer to my highest self. And that’s what I really want, to be as close to my highest self as often as I possibly can in this Human Condition.

When I pause to respond, instead of just react in the moment, I do have a sense of freedom. I’m not tied as tightly to my Human Condition, to all those flaws I carry so well. And the more I practice pausing, the easier pausing becomes. I guess that’s growth.

This week I’m going to think about entering that space of growth and freedom and see how often I can go there instead of into my immediate reactions, reactions driven by my own sense of self-importance and ego.

I need something to occupy my poor brain, worn out in this stretch to November 3.

I wonder if it’s possible just to go into that space for awhile and hide. Not react and not respond.

Okay, it’s not. Not for this opinionated Human Bean. 

And just to be clear, I DO get a perverse pleasure from many of my reactions. But the “freedom” they give me doesn’t last. I makes me feel bad, really.

Wasn’t it just last week I commented that it’s a good thing life is a journey? Well, it’s a good thing it’s a practice, too. Not sure what I’m practicing for, but I know it makes the present a lot better.