Responsive Or Reactive ?
September 29, 2023
We often find ourselves toggling between two primary psychological modes: reactive and responsive.
You can Imagine the reactive mode as a high-pressure situation – it’s the one that makes you feel stressed out. In this mode, you tend to snap judgments quickly, lose your sense of perspective, and take things too personally. It’s like being constantly annoyed, bothered, and frustrated.
As many of us have experienced firsthand, our decision-making skills go haywire when we’re in this reactive state of mind. We make impulsive choices that we later regret. Moreover, when in this state, we develop the superpower for pushing people’s buttons and bringing out the worst in them. And, when an opportunity comes knocking, we’re usually too overwhelmed or irritable to notice it.
On the flip side, we have the responsive mode, which is like our mental oasis. When we’re in this state, we’re at our most relaxed. We regain perspective, take things less personally, and trade rigidity for flexibility and calmness. In the responsive mode, we operate at our best and don’t trigger others. Problem-solving becomes a graceful dance. When an opportunity arises, our minds are open and receptive to new ideas.
Once you become aware of these two distinct modes, you’ll start noticing which one you’re in at any given moment. You’ll see the patterns in your behavior and emotions become more predictable. Your self-awareness will help you notice yourself veering towards irrationality and negativity in the reactive mode and embracing a calm and wise outlook in the responsive state of mind. It’s like having a compass for navigating the waters of your own mind.