Equal and Opposite

Newton’s third law states that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. The same goes for the actions of life and our emotional reactions to these situations. Our initial reactions are likely the ones with which we’re most comfortable or familiar. Why? Because they are the easiest reactions, and after enough experiences, they are also predictable. What if, we took a pause in these scenarios to consider what the equal and opposite reaction would be? Even if that equal and opposite reaction doesn’t seem to be the appropriate response given the circumstance, perhaps it succeeds in creating a little bit of space between you and the emotion being felt so intensely. Perhaps neither extreme, the intensity of your initial reaction and the consideration of its equal and opposite, would be a rational response. Perhaps somewhere in the grey, where the vast majority of our rational emotional real estate resides, is the appropriate response. How many interactions on a given day could benefit from this small consideration? If only we pause to steal a breath.

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Aspiring Stoic and Doting Father

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