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The Domino Effect: Dealing with Reactions and Stress by Judy Davis, The Direction Diva

I love Facebook, so often it gets me thinking and today when I saw a profile with an interesting observation,  I just had to share and talk about it for a moment.

The post stated: “I don’t understand how one person’s ugly personality can change everyone elses good mood“. And boy oh boy could I relate.

Over the years, I have seen how one person’s mood can affect everything and everyone around them. Sometimes the effect is empowering while at other times it completely destroys the energy of anyone in their wake. These extremes made me wonder why people fall into a pattern of allowing someone else to affect them so dramatically.  I know I do.

There are people who can make me feel like crap with just a look, and there are others who make me feel like I’m invincible. And I’m sure you can relate.

Relationships are like that. In everything we do we must interact with those around us. But have you noticed that it all seems to get messed up the minute we stop connecting and begin reacting to any given situation. Have you ever noticed how your mood can be the result of how you react to something in you life.  It may be how you respond to something that someone else says or does, or it might be how they react to something that you said or did.

Think about it, how often do you react instead of connect? And when you do, isn’t that when things become very stressful?

I think that for me when I begin “reacting” instead of relating and connecting to people life gets harder. I put up my emotional barriers up and begin to “act” out in response to various situations rather than just allowing life to happen without getting all jazzed up. Stress brings that out in all of us I think. When we are stressed out, we react and put our defenses up much quicker and that snowballs and causes others to do the same.  The next thing you know you are caught in a tornado of intensity or domino effect that just isn’t good for anyone.

It’s a vicious cycle, and frankly it stinks and makes life challenging even if you are The Direction Diva.

I believe that it is impossible for people to move forward in their lives in a positive way if they become reactionary. And if I look back to the times when I have been stuck or in a rut, it comes right down to that. My reactions became the catalyst for my behavior, and my behavior dictated the actions I took (or the excuse for why I didn’t 🙂 )

You see, if you only react to people and situations rather than connect with and understand your surroundings, it is very difficult to find joy & contentment. I know that for myself the best way that I can live the life I want is to actively seek what it is I am looking for, and the only way to do this is to actively connect with my life and the people in it.

So the next time you feel as if you are in a constant state of stress or your relationships are under strain, take a moment and determine if you are interacting in your life or ask yourself if you are nearly reacting……you may be surprised at what you discover!


~Judy Davis, the Direction Diva is a motivational speaker, author and entrepreneur as well as a military life and teen suicide prevention expert. Co-founder of DASIUM, Judy’s books Right Side Up  and Warning Signs: Is Your Teen at Riskare go to resources for families and her websites are filled with tips, inspiration and resources for those looking for direction. Connect with Judy at

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