What do you do when you feel yourself about to react negatively? And that’s putting it lightly! You know the point when things are about to get UGG-LY. You feel like you have been pushed too far and you’re about to scream. When butting heads with your kids doesn’t even come close to describing it? When your co-worker is being completely unreasonable? Your family is driving you MAD! It’s a hellish moment and you are on the verge of bursting into a Mommy monster.
The key to not reacting is to be the observer.
The Observer vs. The Reactor
Observe the desire to react within yourself instead of being the reaction. Take a step back and look at the reaction about to be released within you. You are not that reaction! Have you ever noticed when you are reacting to something you become totally swept away in your emotions? They completely become you. For me, it feels like my emotions overtaking my mind.
While I am meditating my kids go upstairs for quiet time. Every afternoon around 3pm we take a break as a family, and have quiet time. I encourage my kids to go in their rooms with a few books to read or to look at the pictures. It doesn’t always go smoothly. Some days they play together. On this particular day they began to fight and cry. At this point in the day I am pretty tired and in need of a breather. Inside I felt like going up there and telling them to shut-it. Stop crying. Stop fighting. Just be quite for 10 minutes.
This is not how I want to act towards my children. I love them way more than the sometimes unpleasant emotions that I feel. The exact point when you feel yourself about to breakdown is also the very moment you have a choice. You can choose to be the reactor or the observer. Pause in the moment when you’re on the edge and feel the window of choice open up.
If you focus on being the observer, that is where you can find your peaceful, calm, kind, loving self. Right now in my life I am working on being the observer. When I feel myself about to react, I try to pull myself back into observer mode. That is where I feel most connected to God, divine energy, or my higher self, whatever you choose to call it.
When I am the observer, I am my soul.
The capability to be the observer has always been there, I just didn’t know it.
Choose to be the observer, and not the reactor.
Choose to be your soul, and not your ego.
Share your wisdom with me in the comments below – What do you do to keep yourself from reacting in stressful situations? How do you keep your cool?