There are always two aspects to the meaning in every moment: the situation in front of me and my experience of what’s happening. Aryeh’s post “Shivers” (June 10) highlights the experiential side. One of the ways I use for finding meaning is to transform even negative feelings into a cue. Someone once suggested to me years ago that if I’m feeling shy, I should use that as a cue to deliberately do the opposite, and focus in on the other person. In logotherapy this is known as dereflection, or focusing on the values in front of me that are more important to me than my own self-preoccupation. Another example of this is when feeling angry to use that as my cue to let it be as it is. This then leads to a calmer and more effective response than trying to fight reality. In a recent experience I did this, and it didn’t change my perception of the other person’s wrongdoing but my reasoned response allowed the other person to sincerely apologize and also engaged him in the seeking of a solution.
What’s your cue? (submitted by Batya)