Tag Archives: respond

4 Steps to Stop Reacting

Do you want to know who you are? Don’t ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you. – Thomas Jefferson

I was reading a book the other day on start taking actions.

One of the topics discussed was on how to stop reacting. You know, about those daily incidents that you are frustrated with. And like a volcano eruption, you lashed out to anyone within your vicinity. It could be driving in a jam-packed highway. Or dealing with your cranky toddlers.

We all know that we need to respond and not react.

Theory sounds simple, but how do we do that?

Someone proposed a four step methodology.

First, stop doing. That’s right, you have thoughts running in your mind, telling you to do things “automatically”. Realise that these actions are not the optimal actions. That is why it is crucial to first stop doing anything. It is wiser to risk being perceived to be staying stunned like an idiot, than to lash out and become a jerk.

Secondly, take a deep breath. Breathing is calming. Breathing is a main component in yoga. Just breathe. Breathe deeply. Notice how your diaphragm moves. Notice how your belly move. Take one, take two, take a couple more. Make sure you are taking your breaths slowly.

Thirdly, be aware of how you are feeling. Right now. What emotions are you having? Don’t make any rash actions when you are angry. We are creatures blessed with a gift of thinking. Use it wisely. Don’t let your emotions dictate you.

Finally, think of happy thoughts. Maybe it’s your spouse. Maybe it’s your children. Maybe it’s your winning in the local sports. Maybe it’s just chilling out in your last vacation. Whatever it is, just think back to happier thoughts. Be calm and serene. You can not be both happy and angry at the same time.

How would you incorporate these 4 simple steps in your life right now?



Fail, Fail Again, Fail Better

Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better. – Samuel Beckett

Reading a book by Pema Chodron, titled Fail, Fail Again, Fail Better.

The book is a collection of her commencement address to the 2014 graduating class of Naropa University and a Q&A with Tami Simon.

Some thoughts from reading the book.

We do not know what would come next. We will never be able to predict the future. Yet, we must move on. Move forward. Dare to take the action.

No note cards. We can prepare as well as we can, and yet we can’t really control the future. We shouldn’t be too rigid. Let the future takes its course, and we adapt accordingly. Do not limit what the future has in hold for us, simply because we have prepared and follow our “note cards” steadfastly.

We tend to label ourselves as “failures” when things go wrong. When things don’t happen to what we have planned. When the results ain’t something that we are happy with.

When bad things happen. it is not necessarily a bad thing. People would say “It is the worst thing ever.” A wise man would say,”Maybe yes, maybe no.” Do not be swayed by the outer circumstances. An event has no meaning, unless the meaning you have given to it. That’s what Tony Robbins has once said.

You could feel frustrated or feel at raged, for the failures that you encounter. Or… Or, you could try to understand why the failures happen. What contributed to it? What tell-tale signs of it? What did you learn? How did you feel? How could you do better next time?

Failures are like walking at the beach and the waves start knocking you, face down to the sand. Real failures are when you remain lying there, suffocated in the sand. To get up, time after time, that’s living. It is tough, but through time and effort, the waves would be insignificant. The struggle would be less of a hassle. You would be more empowered.

You can’t control what has happened. But you can control on how you react to it. Or rather, you choose on how you respond to it. Remember, every action is a choice. You choose to respond. It’s a responsibility.

There’s more to the book, it’s better when you read it yourself.



Mayor Svante Myrick

Yesterday is not ours to recover, but tomorrow is ours to win or lose. – Lyndon B. Johnson

It’s an inspiring story on Upworthy.

A young mayor who is connected to his constituents with social media.

Messages reach him, uncensored.

A guy with a vision for his city.

A story from rag to inspiring others.

His situation is not a disadvantage to him. His poverty doesn’t restrict his potential.

Instead, it inspired him to do good.

Taking up works to support his study.

To be grateful of what the government has done for him, and him back to society, in return.

“We are successful when we take care of each other, when we look out for each other,” – Svante Myrick

Each and everyone of us has a situation that we are facing. Whether it is favorable or not favorable.

We can’t change what has happened to us. But we can change what we think and believe in. And we can change our reaction to it. We choose to respond, instead to react to it using knee-jerk response.

Have a good read of the article in Upworthy.




Courage is grace under pressure. – Ernest Hemingway


How do you handle pressure?

Psychology Today shares an interesting article on the type of people when facing pressure.

Pressure cooker : the one who would hold in the pressure, thinking he can do it. Hold. Hold. Hold. Hold. Hold. Boom. Explosion when he can no longer contain it. Sounds like a time bomb. Ticking. And with a very serious consequence.

Pressure reducer : the one who would reduce the stress to the level that he can manage. Judging whether the goals are realistic, and not stressed by unrealistic goals.

Pressure avoider : one who would do anything so that he doesn’t feel any pressure at all. This means giving up opportunities for growth and improvement.

Pressure performer : the minority who excels despite of pressure. One who understand his capability and the realism of his goals. Detached from the end results, knowing he can be in peace when he has given his all (effort). Always confident in their capabilities.

Even though pressure performer works the best, we all know that we are not (or may not be) pressure performer. Understanding our styles in handling pressures and stress is key in knowing what would be our reaction when the situation arises.

Knowing our styles allows us to plan on how to respond, instead to react to situations.

Knowing our styles let us live in peace with ourselves, with our families, with our colleagues.

What is your style in facing pressure? What can you do with this knowledge?