Think before you speak. Think before you act. It’s one of those sayings dealt out to children from the parenting deck of cards. It’s a saying that isn’t usually adopted by anyone and instead reserved for awkward moments of embarrassment or frustration. While it’s 100% good advice it’s actually very very hard to do, especially in a world that is moving faster and faster every.single.day.
It seems as though thinking has given way to reacting.
We react in anger every time someone cuts us off in traffic by yelling out.
We react in frustration every time a line is too long and the person at the front is going too slow.
We react in defense every time our methods or beliefs or lifestyle is questioned.
We are a society that does a whole lot of reacting and not a ton of thinking or breathing. And where does this get us? No where. In fact, it puts up walls around our hearts and minds, it fills our spirits with pain and despair, and clouds our vision so we can’t see or connect with anyone or anything around us.
Even though it seems hard to stop from reacting – even though reacting seems immediate and unstoppable – I do believe the old adage is right, it is important to think before you act.
It’s just missing two fundamental steps that need to come first, that can help you pause and take value of yourself, your situation and the world around you: breathing and reconnecting… One deep breath creates space and opportunity, clears your vision, illuminates the entire situation. One moment of reconnection with your heart/mind/soul can help you remember and realign with your true values and purpose.
One deep breath brings light into the darkness, one moment of reconnection brings truth into your being, and one chance to think, to truly think, can help you respond with mindfulness.
For instance, what if we prayed for safe travel for those rushing from one place to the next?
What if we relied on patience and compassion when the line seems to go on forever?
What if we embraced acceptance and understanding when met with new ideas, beliefs and lifestyles?
What if we began breathing, reconnecting, and thinking before doing anything else?
Rather than getting angry/frustrated/defensive every time something goes a little off-course, what if we took a deep breath, reconnected with our heart, and thought about the situation as a whole? What if we realized that not everyone is out to get us, that not everything and everyone is against us, that not every slight is meant to hurt us? What if we realized that we don’t need to rush our response, that there is time for honesty, compassion and mindfulness?
I believe if we began moving a little slower, giving ourselves the time and opportunity to breathe/reconnect/and think we would create ripples of peace and compassion that would change our mindset, our relationships, our day to day lives, and the world as a whole.
Breathe, reconnect, think… then respond.
As a Writer, Life Coach and Reiki Guide Erin is dedicated to supporting people in their journey to find clarity, direction and happiness. After moving past her own barriers to happiness she knew that she could help others though the same mindful yet bold approach she used to create a joyful, engaging life.
She believes in the importance of community, connection, compassion, and a good cup of coffee.