Does anyone know the difference between Respond v/s React? What are you doing when you are in problem? Are you reacting or responding? First of all let’s see what happens in these different scenarios:

Respond: This involves some thought. This is often delayed but rational and based on reason and emotions.

React: This comes immediately and based on fully emotions and feelings at that time.

In most situations we are reacting without understanding the situation and without predicting the outcome. This is because much of our lives is spend in reaction to others and events around us. Reactions are based on fear and insecurities whereas responding on other hand, is understanding the situation and deciding the best course of actions.

These actions are mostly based on our past experience. sometimes I observed that if same sentence is been spoken by two different people then we might react on one and respond to another that is all because of our past experience.

Have you ever seen crisis managers like emergency management officials, fire-fighters? They are trained in variety of scenarios so they can respond rather than react (be panic).

Let’s take one example:

  • React: Assume you did mistake in your work. Your boss immediately react by getting angry, upsetting you and himself, worsening your relationships and spoiling work environment.
  • Respond: you did mistake in work, boss notice his anger reaction, but pause, take breath and think about situation. First response is to see if you have not done mistakes in some critical places which directly client facing. Understand the criticality of issue and fix the problem. Calmly talk about how to avoid mistakes like that in future.

There will always be external events that bother us, but if we learn to respond and not just react, we can make things better and not worse.

The main thing to learn is mindfulness, pause and response.

Mindfulness means watching ourselves when something happen which normally upset us or trigger some kind of emotional reaction.tumblr_naz1ydVGd61tjj84vo1_500

Pause: most of us have habit of act immediately. Pause helps us to remove ourselves politely from the situation and let ourselves cool down before we respond.

Response: don’t be anxious if you are in problem or created any issues. Just solve it at the first moment but be more careful when it happens next time.

Learn lesson from your mistakes and make sure it will not happen again!

So what will you do, React or Respond?


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