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In a longish life as a professional writer, I have heard a thousand masterpieces talked out over bars, restaurant tables and love seats. I have never seen one of them in print. Books must be written, not talked.
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I read a quote a few days ago that said something like, "The problem is rarely the problem. The problem is usually the reaction to the problem."

I've been noticing lately that what seems to cause conflict in relationships - at work, at home, between friends, etc - is the response to a person's insecurity.

We're all insecure at times. This will drive us to do really stupid and drastic things to protect ourselves that we might not otherwise do, but insecurity is not really rational. And so we do the thing we never thought we'd do, or we say the thing we never thought we'd say. Did we mean to do or say it? It seems as though it were driven by a different side of us. Which is true, in a way. Our instincts rise up and it's fight or flight and we react. It's never classy when this happens. We're usually ashamed of our behavior later.

I think our reaction to someone's insecurity is where we spur the frightened beast and the problem then escalates and becomes the problem. Rather than recognize it, we can react back and make it worse.

I can't control the behavior of others, but I can control my response to their behavior. By believing that the reaction is the problem, I can usually take someone's insecurity and calm it with an even-handed response.

Cool hands, warm heart - isn't that the saying?


by Brett Rogers, 6/30/2006 1:55:53 PM


yes, yes, yes...I COMPLETELY agree. The same goes for someone else's reaction to you. If someone decides to take something you say personally which you didn't mean, that is just their insecurity and we can't control that.



Posted by Casey, 7/12/2006 4:57:19 PM

I love that comment... believe it or not, Don Johnson taught me something in the TV Guide years ago: "I'm not responsible for the reactions of others to my life." He was referring to his celebrity and the gossip that surrounds him. It drove him nuts until he figured this out.

Very true for us too... thanks Casey!



Posted by Brett Rogers (, 7/13/2006 12:40:48 PM

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