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Six Ways to Respond Rather than React

Six Ways to Respond Rather than React
In a recent leadership workshop a participant asked me: "How can I get staff to think about choices or decisions and not just react?" My first thought was of a classic Zig Ziglar story that talks about the big difference one word can make. Zig said (and I'm paraphrasing): Imagine going to the doctor for ...


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Preventing Reactions

Preventing Reactions
  • Am I reacting? Simply asking yourself that question can ground you and give you a quick mental break to perhaps choose differently.
  • You react when you think you don’t have any other option. When you realize that you always have choices, you can remember to consider them and the consequences they bring before moving forward.
  • Always consider the context – what is happening and how the next step will best serve you, the organization and everyone involved.




How To Respond Rather Than React

How To Respond Rather Than React
  • When you think about how this specific situation fits into your overall goals and objectives it will be easier to respond.
  • The best decisions are informed by a proper balance of facts and emotions.
  • Mentally move into the future and look back to determine your best response to the current situation.



Acting In Emergency Situations

Acting In Emergency Situations

While responding seems like the prudent choice, in a crisis or emergency situation it may seem that you would logically need to react or operate in a split-second decision mode.

The reality is the best crisis managers are trained and practice a variety of scenarios precisely so they can respond rather than react. The difference is in preparation and thought.



Helping Others Respond

Helping Others Respond
  • Make your expectations clear and help people understand when and where you expect response rather than immediate reaction.
  • It is hard to encourage or inspire others to respond if you aren’t modeling it yourself.
  • Once you are responding rather than reacting, you are in a better position to coach others based on your experience, citing examples and more.




Reaction And Response

When someone reacts, it is often an emotionally negative response. When someone responds, it is a forward-thinking, progressive-acting answer.

Reacting is often an emotional response that ...

Break Rules

Incorporate more risks into your business and work style. Think about how to change your core processes, do them faster and increase your sales.

Try borrowing from other industries' methods to change your model. Also, think about how to scale your business and how to change it to connect with more customers.

Have Vision

Incorporate an end vision for your business and shape tasks to achieve that vision -- every week and month. Turn those ideas into executable plans.

To get started, break up your objective into achievable and measurable milestones with deadline dates for each (and mark those dates in your electronic calendar). Then share those milestones with key accountability partners to drive personal accountability.

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Guiding The Unconscious Mind

You can work with the unconscious to unearth its associations and align them more closely with your values and goals. Doing so, you can tap all the power the unconscious has to offer.


The Unconscious Mind

Left to its own devices, the unconscious mind creates inaccurate beliefs and self-imposed limitations. Its main goal is your survival and it does what it can to get rid of threats, even if it means derailing your conscious goals.

That said, the unconscious can also give the energy to accomplish your goals and offer a lot of intuitive wisdom. But to get to those benefits you need to help it transcend its useless limitations. 

Of Reaction And Response

A reaction is instant and driven by the beliefs of the unconscious mind. When you say or do something “without thinking,” that’s the unconscious mind making decisions in your stead.

Responses, on the other hand, are slower and based on information from both the conscious and unconscious mind. A response takes into consideration the well-being of not only you but those around you, weighs the long term effects and your core values.

Controlling Your Emotions.

  • Identify your emotional triggers and learn to manage your reactions.
  • Learn and pay attention to the subtle warning signs your body gives when you're starting to react rather than resp...

Reacting Vs. Responding

Reacting is when we unconsciously experience an emotional trigger and unconsciously express or relieve that emotion

However, when we respond, we notice how we are feeling, and we consciously decide how we will respond

EQ Versus IQ

Research indicates that Emotional Quotient EQ is what determines how successful you will be as a leader. Most leaders get hired because of their IQ, but promoted or fired because of their EQ.

The good EQ allows you to manage your emotions. It enables you to understand your feelings, manage them and then take time to make the right decision.