Guest Post – 300 Steps to Greatness

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Today’s Guest Blogger is Debra Reble!

This post in particular speaks volumes as to where I am in my journey and I suspect that so many of you are as well.

Follow her blog:  Debra Reble – Guiding Your Path to Well-Being

Permission to Pause: Reducing Our Reactivity

Giving ourselves the permission to pause, allows us to slow down, create conscious awareness and the space needed between the reality of a situation and our reactivity. When we push the pause button, we tune in and listen to ourselves, gaining a more detached perspective. Like operating the zoom lens of a camera, we slowly pull ourselves away, creating the distance we need to explore the root of our reactivity and the behavioral patterns that they trigger.

Pausing before we react, activates our conscious awareness and helps us disengage from blaming, attacking, or resisting others when we feel angry or irritable. Keep in mind that no one else has directly caused our discomfort. In many cases, we may discover that we are not angry at the person at all, but rather at the information we are receiving about ourselves. Though at first it may feel like we want to kill the “messenger” what we really want to kill is the “message.”

In such situations, there are several things you can do to reveal the unresolved issue and release your reaction. First, ask yourself: “What am I feeling right now?” “What is this person or situation showing me about myself?” “What unresolved issues do I need to identify and release?” Remember, that every interaction is an opportunity for personal transformation.

Second, you can shift your reaction to a healthy response by walking out of the room, setting the phone down, or writing a letter or e-mail to send later. When you allow your reaction to happen without directing it toward anyone, it will usually dissipate. For example, in martial arts training, students learn to move toward or sidestep rather than resisting an attacker’s advances, so the negative energy then ricochets back in their direction. Likewise, when we move toward what we are resisting we disperse the negative energy surrounding the issue.

Third, take purposeful breaks during the day to catch and release any reactions that you had with others. Slow down throughout your day so you move into a more present state where you become more aware of the negative thoughts and emotions that trigger your reactivity. Pay attention to discomfort or tension in your body when in potentially uncomfortable situations and listen to the spiritual information being received.

Finally, separating your reactions from someone else’s gives you the healthy distance you need to stop taking theirs personally or blaming them for ours. You can stay compassionate and responsive by Envisioning the other person going through their own self-discovery that likely has nothing to do with you. This kind of compassionate detachment increases your ability to affect difficult situations with positive energy. In choosing to respond, rather than react, you give the individual loving space in which to examine the source of their own reactions. Providing another person with the opportunity to see and release their reactivity opens the possibility for better interactions in the future.

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