- Fact: All of us have default tendencies – those reactions that we instinctively do without thinking when under pressure. Some of these can be helpful (like hitting the brakes to avoid an accident) while others can hinder us (like becoming defensive any time someone criticizes our team). What can be less obvious is how our reactive tendencies have been shaped by our past, and in particular by our early experiences in our families of origin.
- Action: Reflect on some of your reactive behaviors that have gotten you into trouble – those things you do automatically without thinking when you feel irritated, pressured or threatened. For each reactive tendency that you can identify, ask yourself this question: What happened in my past (including in my family growing up) that makes me especially sensitive to this trigger? If you can link some of your current reactive patterns to situations you faced a long time ago – and see how the situations you face today are not identical to those of the past – it can help to reduce the strength of your reactivity and give you more choice in the moment about how best to respond.
To find out how resilient you are click here for your free or full assessment.