Break Automatic Reactions, You Have the Power to Act

Have you ever been caught in a reaction that you never intended to happen in the first place? 

The dictionary defines reaction as “a reverse movement or tendency.  An action in a reverse direction or manner.”  So, basically going in the opposite direction than what you may have wanted or intended.

Often times the reaction is from the feeling of being forced, or pushed to a breaking point.  The continual input of suggestive thought wears on our psyche like a rubber band being twisted too tight; something has to give.  However, continually “going way” can become addictive….an easy out for finding peace.  I have been impressed by a statement by  President Boyd K. Packer.  He once stated, Addiction has the capacity to disconnect the human will and nullify mortal agency.  It can rob one of the power to decide.” I want to focus on how a habitual pattern, or thought has the power to rob one on the ability to make a choice; to decide.

Could blame become a habit?

I have found for myself, that it was easier to blame another person for my volatile  reaction than to take the responsibility of making a change. Addressing my own insecurity and thoughts takes more work, and a whole lot more effort, then shifting my view to others out side of me, and thinking my reaction is their fault because of what THEY DID.

Let  me share a simple example that you may relate to.  My husband and I became the proud owner of a family dog; actually I didn’t want the dog, but my husband did.  The agreement was that he took full responsibility for her needs. However, because his schedule was not always conducive,  the responsibility for the dog often fell on my shoulders.  The perfect recipe for stimulating a negative emotion called resentment.

The experience

One morning as I was following my morning routine, I sent the dog out into the backyard for her morning potty break.  All seemed to be running smoothly as I returned to my tasks for the day.  A major problem had transpired that I was unaware of.  The dog had jumped the “make-shift” fence, and was now chasing the neighbor’s little child.

Meanwhile, busy in the kitchen I started hearing the commotion outside.  In an instant, I was time-warped to a memory of chasing the dog down the street.  Like a floodgate opening, these past thoughts filled my mind, releasing a wave of emotional terror and intense frustration. Instantly, I took off running out the door to save the child and retrieve the dog.


My thoughts, like a wild river rapidly running over a cliff, flood my mind instantly.  I began thinking, “If only ‘he’ had never gotten this dog, I would not have to take the time to chase after it!”  Or, “if my spouse had fixed the fence, this wouldn’t be happening.” Another thought, “if my spouse had taken the time to put the electric shock collar on the dog, she would not be able to jump the fence.” Negative thoughts just kept coming, validating all my reasons for why we should not have a dog.

The more I thought, the more I felt the explosion of emotions in every limb of my body. And as the list of angry thoughts continue racing through my mind, the more I reacted by yelling and screaming at anyone, or anything that got in my way, as I attempted to retrieve the dog.  Let  me just say it was not one of my shinning moments.

I was convinced that the course of events I was experiencing was totally HIS fault, and that my rage and hateful reaction towards the innocent eyewitnesses, was totally justified.. Never once did I realize that I was stepping into what is called, the victim mode.


There are several situations where a person becomes a victim, due to no fault of their own.  However, the type of victim I am addressing in this article, is the one who sees the events in their life as something that is always “being done to them”, choosing to feel powerless in their ability to make any changes, or gather learning from the experience.

Reactions are a product

The victim mindset actually sees his reactions as a product of someone else’s actions. The thinking of, “I feel this way because of you and what you have done.”  He feels justified for his negative emotions, rather than taking responsibility for his own personal perceptions, that are creating the emotions.  This is a normal reaction for most individuals. An attitude that will ultimately keep the mind in bondage, from choosing such a powerless reaction.

The ability to discipline our own thinking to the degree that we are the creators of our own destiny, takes daily practice and conviction to control ones mindset.

Let’s look at another situation.  This time the byproduct of someones negative actions begin to tear away at their outlook on life.  Their mood is affected as well as their ability to respond positively. They are more and more hot tempered, flying off at the slightest situation.  Or, they may do the opposite by pulling inward, numbing themselves from the world. Their energy is low causing them to settle in a depressed state of mind.

Emotional discharge

Either way the fallout from either emotional discharge, activates a cloud of despair, choking off the joy, peace and contentment of all those around them.

Spending time with them begins to wear on you. Your thoughts turn to excessive worry and concern for their welfare, which only begins the slow process of drawing the vital energy right out of you .  The longer you allow yourself to be exposed to their negative attitude, without focusing on strong positive daily habits,  the easier it is to become lost in the realms of their problem, feeling like it’s just as much yours to deal with.  

The mindset of Conviction

It takes conviction to a life of action, to keep oneself in balance mentally and emotionally .  However, due to the overload of demands that we carry, anxiety is a common symptom.  Many find relief from different forms of man made products.  But to address the root of the issue, takes looking a little deeper.  One must take the time to address the thoughts behind the reaction.

There are 3 steps to this process.

  1. To discover the negative idea or thought,
  2. get creative in designing a new thought, one with a higher vibrational frequency, and
  3. then put in the effort into focus on that  thought to make it the automatic response.

According to science, every living element in our body radiates a vibration or frequency, measured in hertz (Hz).  In fact, everything has an electro-magnetic frequency (or vibration).

I believe that our choice of thought adds, or detracts from this frequency.  A simple test is to think of something sad and feel how your energy drops; then focus your thoughts on something that makes you smile and feel happy, and notice how your energy raises.

“All that we are is a result of what we have thought.”

Abraham Lincoln

You are being told every minute of the day what someone is thinking, by the emotions and attitudes that they display.  But how can you understand and translate this foreign language that you may not understand?  I found a simple way.  I adapted this process from a chart by Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.  Now when I am faced with a troubling attitude, I can refer to this chart to help guide someone important to me, how to satisfy their need and make a greater positive change in their life.

After you confirm your email, this chart and an explanation of how to use it will be sent to your inbox.

Is it really possible to change?

My introduction to the power of our thoughts came while lying in a hospital ICU ward after giving birth to our fifth child.  My body was losing blood faster than they could pump it back in.  I remember lying there, not sure what was happening but aware that things were serious because of the expressions on the attending nurses’ faces.

My mother took a turn coming in to visit me.  Her words to me were something along these lines, “Cathy, you can turn this around – just start telling your body to heal.”  I remember thinking that she must be crazy.  I knew that she loved me, but what did my thoughts have to do with this situation anyway?  Well, that was my introduction to the mind/body connection.  She had not studied or attained knowledge of this topic, but she was totally inspired to speak those words to me.

Emotions – a chemical product of our thought

A thought that is held long enough, the mind will produce a chemical to match that thought.  This chemical will then flow through our body and affects our muscles and organs positively or negatively.

We know these chemicals as our emotions.

Now, the tricky part here is that we can be thinking good positive thoughts; however. if a negative perception has been ingrained into our subconscious mind over a period of time ….that thought becomes the stronger thought and will cancel out the new positive statement you could be saying 

SO the key is to recognize the negative perception that is holding back your progression of moving forward with your goal, and then replace it with a much stronger perception.   A thought with a higher frequency that can actually nullify what you originally were thinking.  These are words that literally have a higher vibration, a more positive effect, that can break apart the old thought.

God has given us a formula

As a woman of faith, I turn to scriptures and pray for answers.  One day I came across what God has given us as a perfect process.  4 simple steps… we need humility, faith, hope, & Charity.  So I applied this formula.

First we have to ASK

(this is humility- the willingness to ask)  Talk with God about what my desires and goals are.  Go into great detail of why what I am seeking, of what is so important to me, and Ask, if it be His will, To STRENGTHEN my efforts.

Second…Design & Create My Thought.

Discover what thoughts are stopping my progress.  Once I have come to understand the negative idea that has held me back, I begin to design and create the grouping of words that support and help me to believe in something new.

The goal is to Create a stronger thought, then stay totally committed and focused on these new beliefs (this is faith – believing in something we can’t see)

As I do this mental work, physically what happens is…

  1. new chemicals are created in the mind,
  2.  giving the person a totally different emotional feeling. (This is known as HOPE).  

Third…keep fueling that hope

The dictionary says…..Hope is the feeling that what is wanted can be had, or that events will turn out for the best:

Hope is a product of our thoughts.  So to have strong hope one must create stronger and stronger thoughts.  This is why the scriptures are so important.  They not only are filled with teachings and lessons to be learned; but they have the ability to change the internal attitude of our mind, creating the proper growing environment, for good thoughts to grow and prosper.

I become passionate about the thoughts I am focusing on.  Each time a worry or doubt drifts through, I repeat my new thought direction with greater conviction and determination.

Fourth…Charity – A Pure Love

Charity is the “Pure love of Christ”.  This kind of love can be easy to extend to others, but not always for ourselves.  Charity is just as much for ourselves as anyone else.   Charity can not be earned, it is a gift God gives and extends to all His children.  It is a love and understanding of who you are that stabilizes and supports, when your foundation is rocked.  A love that NEVER GIVES UP!  It is a willingness to Keep going forward…. to KEEP ON TRYING.  How is that possible?  Because through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, you, and I are given the opportunity to try…fail…and try again.  Through His grace we are given the ability, and strength to Act beyond whatever we could possibly ever do on our own.

Our part is to be pro-active in these first 3 steps, to the best of our ability.  To never give up.  The 4th step comes to us through grace.  It is a willingness to accept, and remind yourself that you are precious in the sight of God.  To realize that you are here to learn and grow through your mistakes, understanding that Jesus Christ will help you change, bringing you a feeling of peace….. a feeling that everything is “right” in your world.

It is at these moments, that you have the ability, power, and strength to Act.  To act in a way that is helpful, and healthy; doing the things that will ultimately lift yourself as well as others.

Creative Thoughts for Positive Motivation by Design

These are a few possible thoughts/perceptions that could be blocking progress and need to be eliminated.  Do not place a judgement on the statements as “being bad”.  Simply say, “Could I have thought, or ever felt this way?” as you read through them……

  1. “I will never be good enough”.
  2. “Ignoring it will make it all go away, so I will just ignore it.”  With this statement one may even have the perception that…. “If I succeed, it could cost me my salvation”.
  3. Worry…a state of choosing to focus on thoughts that create an overwhelming fear of the future.  “I am overwhelmed.”  “I have so much to do, how will I ever get it all done?”  etc.
  4. I am lonely, lost and feeling all alone.If any of these perceptions ring true for you….then follow the 4 steps…..
  1. Ask
  2. Raise the thought vibration with with a new thought.
    Sample Replacements:

I give ear to God’s counsel of becoming wise and obedient,  having a willing heart to pay attention to the impressions that come from the Spirit. These prompting will guide me to my next step.  The Savior is standing between me and any conflict.”

“I have a clear picture of daily responsibilities.  I am capable of viewing the situation clearly, as I think through my actions and choices.”

“I have the Faith to step out of my comfort zone, to stay in-tune, to be wise with a discerning spirit that emulates great faith in God, life, Self, and other people.  I am capable to be part of the chain-braking generation, having the faith to get rid of old family patterns.”

  1. Continue to read and focus your mind on these thoughts many times throughout the day… doing this, you will fuel and raise the feeling of hope.
  2.  Take Action.  Be grateful, recognizing that through the Grace of God your abilities are strengthened. Serve others in simple ways, and Serve Yourself by doing the things that are healthy and will keep you in-tune to God’s promptings.


The thoughts that I have written above, are to replace old perceptions….You can change the wording up to best fit you.  The point is that focusing on these thoughts will neutralize old perceptions.

 Remember words are a sound that has a vibration, and a frequency….They have the power to not only change how one feels, but to literally change the way a body functions. 

Remember YOU have the power to Influence.

To lean more about Positive Motivation by Design click this link





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