I am frustrated that I didn’t note where this quote came from. If I figure that out, I’ll add it. But it beautifully describes the typical progression of mindfully exploring one’s own reactivity:
“So much of our suffering comes from the fact that we want things to be different. We are grasping for it to be better or we are pushing away what is here. With meditation, we become familiar with these states that are usually the root of difficult emotions like sadness and anger. As we see them, we get a chance to recognize how reactive we are to them.
“Unfortunately, changing that reactivity doesn’t happen all at once. It becomes a matter of recognizing the results—how things usually get worse--when we are reactive. We begin to see it after we’ve been reactive. Then, with practice, we begin to see it while we are reactive. And, eventually, we begin to see it before it happens and we can make a different choice in terms of how we respond.”