Avoid The Trap Of Reaction Spirals

 September 11, 2012
Posted by Dr. Monique

avoid trap of reaction spirals

Avoid the Trap of Reaction Spirals

Often, we will allow criticism to holds us back, by justifying our anger over a situation when we say things like I have the right to be mad. The problem with that statement is it can make you spiral down into a dark whole, impact your creative flow and cause you to attract more negative experiences.  It often starts like this; someone criticizes some aspect of you or your business.  You react to the criticism and become defensive. If you stopped there, that would be bad enough, but often we spend the next hour analyzing the critical comments in an effort to convince ourselves that the insulter is incorrect.  And if we fail to convince ourselves, we phone a friend and share the story with them, all in an effort to cancel the negative criticism. Eventually things spiral into a big tornado, causing you to lose your momentum even if it is only for a couple of hours.  You still lose.

Reaction spirals are overreactions to something and then compounding the problem by overanalyzing it.  Wouldn’t it be great if you could see these little spirals coming and avoid them?  You can! Here are three tips to help you avoid going in to a “reaction spiral.”

Use Your Intuition!         What is your gut telling you about the situation?  Is the person genuinely concerned about your success and trying to help you be better?  If so, learn from the message, make the changes you feel will make you or your business better and move on.  If they person is just be critical and doesn’t really care about your success and is more invested in seeing you fail, move on.  Focusing too long will change your success mindset and knock you of your game and out of your creative flow.


Tune into Your Negative Reaction.       Use the negative feelings as an alert to potential trouble.  Focus on the positive aspects of your project, business or life and remind yourself that you will not be everyone’s cup of tea, but you will be someone’s cup of tea.


Turn Criticism into Positive Feedback.        Sometimes criticism is a message that we may need to make a change. My friend was told by her good friend that her project would never be successful.  She listened to her friend’s remarks, identified the changes that she felt would make her project better, and then she released her friend’s negative judgment of her project. She decided to take her friend’s criticism and use it as a motivation to make a high quality successful product.  She decided not to spend hours analyzing the criticism and allowing it to impact her flow of creativity!

Criticism is rarely helpful, but good quality feedback is always great.  Next time you are in a position to offer information to a friend, consider using constructive feedback.  In the end it will be much more helpful!

Overall, the best way to free yourself of reactions spirals is to relinquish the need to seek approval, realize your life and business success are not totally dependent upon the good or bad opinions of others and believe you are good enough just as you are!