We are responsible for our reactions

I read a story somewhere that goes something like this:

A woman steps on the bus to go to work in the morning and the bus driver is very rude to her. Her good mood plummets, making her upset and angry. As she gets to work, her mood infects those around her, creating a bad vibe in the office. Who’s fault is it? The bus driver or the woman’s?”

It is, of course, nobody’s fault. Fault is always an excuse for not taking responsibility. The bus driver was in a bad mood for whatever reason, that is his responsibility. The woman could have chosen to report him, ignore him or get angry. She chose to get angry and she chose to spread it on to her colleagues – her responsibility. If her colleagues react badly, that’s their responsibility.

We are all responsible, not only for our actions but also for our re-actions. We can always choose what we wish to have triggered in us. Our reactions are not put there by whatever/whoever triggered it, they are ours, that which we carry within. Nobody puts anything into us, or make us feel a certain way, we do.

There is no way of controlling that which is around us, none whatsoever. But, we can control how we react to it. By being centered in ourselves and keeping our balance within, we are so much more able to deal with what goes on around us. This is the only kind of control that is guaranteed.

Everybody can do or say or act in any way they like, but we don’t have to take it. If somebody is being nasty to me I walk away. I have no right to tell them they are “not allowed” and they have no right to demand that I take their nastiness. By unplugging from the person, I unplug from the bad situation and I can walk away without allowing it to destroy my day. My choice is to not allow myself to be triggered. Big lesson, not always so easy but oh so liberating!

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