Stimulus and Response

Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom. 
- Viktor E. Frankl

It is an easy trap to lament circumstance: health difficulties, losing a job, relationship breakdown. Frankl’s key message is the Stoic one of knowing what we can truly control (our thoughts) and then using that as the foundation as to how we positively interact with the world.

We can’t fully control the ‘stimulus’. Yes, many of us are fortunate to be able to make decisions that influence where we are and who we meet but we can’t rely on it. Therefore, we should focus on what we can control — our thoughts, attitude, intentions.

Frankl’s ideas were formed during his time at Auschwitz. Stripped of everything that he could formerly control, how he responded to his environment was critical for his well-being during his time in the concentration camp and beyond.

We all have the power to respond well to circumstance and fundamentally, make good decisions. We should strive to remember that power when we encounter challenges and respond in a way that aligns with what we value.

We're going to the North Coast

Thurso East

Fog, mist, blurred headlights, rain

We're going to the North Coast

Some things you can't escape

Beached; separate but stuck


Early morning bolt to Thurso East

Together a spurious grasp on reality

Fumbling for direction and clarity

Filming from the van


Big waves, gliding on the water

Jousting one by one

Impossible to tame

Brief control, ever looming


Stretching dark blue barrel

Slams down, white spray jumps

Mirtazapine, pressure, trapped

Fog, mist, blurred headlights, rain