Reaction vs response
While surfing the net a very popular story of management and self-development came across. The story revolved around a cockroach and how it brought about the nuances and reactions of an individual. The story begins in a restaurant where a group of ladies were sitting together enjoying there meal and suddenly a cockroach flew from somewhere and sat on one of the ladies shoulder. The lady suddenly started jumping and shouting out of fear, she wanted to get rid of that creepy thing on her which she managed to. But suddenly it landed on the lady standing next to her. The other lady reacted in the same fashion.
One of the waiters in the restaurant came rushing to rescue the ladies. In the relay of throwing, the cockroach next fell upon the waiter. Now it was the waiters turn, but the reaction was different, very different. He stood firm and with confidence grabbed the cockroach and immediately threw him out of the restaurant. He handled everything with patience and utmost calm.
When you analyze the entire episode what do you feel?
- Is it really the cockroach due to which such a huge havoc was created or was it something else?
- If the cockroach was responsible, then why was the waiter not disturbed?
Basically it is not the cockroach, but the helplessness of the ladies to handle the disturbance caused by the cockroach that disturbed the ladies.
There are situations in life for which we blame others such as father scolding, boss/seniors shouting, partner demanding, it is really not the problem that disturbs you but the inability to handle those situations. More than the problem, it’s the reaction to the problem that creates chaos in your life.
There is a difference between how an individual react or respond to a problem. Reactions are always instinctive whereas responses are always well thought of and in the above story; the women reacted, whereas the waiter responded.
The story narrated above says aloud the true nature of human behavior and there mentality to handle a given situation.