Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Reacting Later is the Goal

How do you react to things?  Let's say you get an email that gets your blood pressure to rise.  Maybe your kids refuse to listen to a thing you say all day.  How about hearing that someone has been saying false things about you.

Do you immediately fly off the handle?  Do you type that volatile email and send it right back?  Do you bite the next kid to disobey's head off? 


Do you sit back and take a deep breath before you respond?

I can tell you that I do not do the latter and it has come to my attention through prayer and discernment that because of that, I am seeing this common trait in most of my children.  It's kind of like a Catch 22.  They misbehave so I react and then they react because that's what I've trained them to do through my reacting.

A vicious cycle that needs to be stopped.

If you react like this, have you ever tried not to?  If you have, you realize how incredibly hard it is to do.  Most of the time the words are out of my mouth before I even realize that I spoke them.  Many times I send a response in an email and realize that if I had just thought through the situation I would have responded differently.  Ugh, what to do?

This sounds like something good to work on during the upcoming Advent season.  I spoke to a priest about it and his advice was to ask for very specific help from the Lord each day and to realize that we cannot depend on our own abilities to conquer, or even subdue, things like this.

Total dependence on God; humility when we fall; slowing down so that there is time to think.  These are the things that will help me to even come close to remembering to stop and think before I react.

What about you?  Have you had this problem and if so, have you come close to dealing with it?  If so, how?

God Bless!

1 comment:

  1. I can really relate to this post! I too have realized how my negative reactions are affecting my kids and our family life. I discovered this post yesterday: http://theorangerhino.com/10-things-i-learned-when-i-stopped-yelling-at-my-kids/
    ... Although I don't think I yell too much...I do need to tackle how I react and taking a deep breath AND focused prayer (like you said) will certainly help...and maybe some of the little reminders/cues from the Orange Rhino. Thanks for sharing! Ooh...and thanks for displaying the Arma Dei Shoppe button. =)