Respond vs React… Soul Musings


The above tea tag  has stuck with me. I realize that I do a LOT more reacting then I do  acting (responding.)

There are certainly times where it feels all we can do is react. However often we can take a breath and respond to that person, situation, fear even tasks around our living and working environments.

Responding feels more intentional, Mindful and Peaceful. (=Acting, thought out and purposeful)

React feels more chaotic, scattered

I have found myself too many times slipping into react mode about life in general. Instead of responding to what I want and need to do that day/evening. I react. I react  by getting sucked into the vortex of emails in my inbox (most of which could wait) I react by taking it personal instead of taking a deep breath, I react by allowing the clutter to distract me from the things that matter more in that moment (though there are times where clearing that clutter is a response to overwhelm not a reaction-it’s more intentional)

Do you find yourself doing this too? Did you even realize that is what you were doing? I didn’t and sometimes in the midst of it I still don’t.

Some ideas I will start to  put into practice that I think will help!

  • Each evening spend a few minutes scheduling the next day ( I create a weekly schedule but don’t always set specific days for specific tasks. )
  • Breathe before I respond and ask myself what (if anything) needs to be responded to.
  • Schedule in daily 5 minute blitzes. Where I have time purposely set aside to do bits of decluttering (physical space or mental space!)
  • Get more specific, sometimes we leave so much openness and freedom that it can make us feel totally stuck on what to do where, when etc. because we have “too many” choices!

Do you have a grounding, centering tool, practice or mantra? I would love to hear it!

Here is to living Inspired, Creative and Empowered



7 responses to “Respond vs React… Soul Musings

  1. Thanks Heather for the lovely post, good time, today I’m back to work after 2 weeks break, not easy, now at lunch time I see your post, and I love “breathe and ask if need to respond” . You saved my day. Hugs and love!

    • Elizabeth,

      Hey I am so glad it was timely for you. I hope that you are being gentle with yourself and that your week turns out to be wonder-fileld

  2. I totally get this! Ive spent so many years retraining myself to pause long enough before, it doesnt always work but when it does i really notice the benefit. Do you know of Tara Brach? Her podcasts and books speak a lot about this, she has a lovely gentle humour too.

  3. Heather- i’m loving your blog! I follow some other blogs but for some reason yours is the only one that senda posts to my inbox, and i’m really enjoying it. I like the part of this post where you mention thinking about what needs to be responded to, “if anything.” Too often do i react to things that, if i really think about it, don’t really matter! And just sorting out what needs a response vs. What doesn’t leaves us so much more free to adjust our focus. Keep up the great posts 🙂 -jen gelhardt

    • Hey Jen!
      Thank You so much for the kind words and taking the time to connect! This respond vs react is something I need a lot of practice on.. practice not perfection right?! Hope you guys are doing well, sending good energy and blessings your way!

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