Momentum Podcast: 501

Reactivity Robs Momentum

by Alex Charfen

Episode Description

Many people confuse reactivity with momentum. It can often feel like momentum, but it’s not. Being in a reactive state is a false feeling of momentum. If you get yourself out of reactivity and into productivity, you will find true momentum. 

When we’re in a reactive state, our decision making narrows and we begin working in a diminished capacity. Being reactive slows down everything in your life. Remember your energy affects the people around you, and if you’re reactive, your team will be reactive. You will also have lower transparency and challenges in communicating with the people around you. Tune in to hear how you can avoid getting yourself into a reactive space! 

Full Transcript Below

A few years ago, I was teaching a course that we no longer teach anymore. It's now wrapped up in our coaching products. I had a pretty well-known entrepreneur in the room, and he made the admission that sometimes he got up in the morning and went on Facebook and picked a fight with somebody so that he could feel the adrenaline, the rush, and that that would help get him through the day. I remember what I told him. I said, "Reactivity robs momentum. You are getting yourself into a reactive state for the false feeling of momentum and if you would get yourself out of reactivity and into proactivity, you'd actually feel momentum and you wouldn't need to do that." I'll explain in a sec.

I'm Alex Charfen, and this is the Momentum Podcast, made for empire builders, game changers, trailblazers, shot takers, record breakers, world makers, and creators of all kinds. Those among us who can't turn it off and don't know why anyone would want to. We challenge complacency, destroy apathy, and we are obsessed with creating momentum so we can roll over bureaucracy and make our greatest contribution. Sure, we pay attention to their rules, but only so that we can bend them, break them, then rewrite them around our own will. We don't accept our destiny. We define it. We don't understand defeat because you only lose if you stop, and we don't know how. While the rest of the world strives for average and clings desperately to the status quo, we are the minority, the few who are willing to hallucinate there could be a better future. And instead of just daydreaming of what could be, we endure the vulnerability and exposure it takes to make it real. We are the evolutionary hunters, clearly the most important people in the world because entrepreneurs are the only source of consistent positive human evolution, and we always will be.

We are evolutionary hunters. We are that small percentage of the population that is supposed to proactively go out and hunt and go make things happen and achieve and make progress and move things forward. That is who we are. Now, part of being an evolutionary hunter means that we probably are more predisposed to being reactive than the average person, that we are more predisposed to getting into fight or flight than the average person, and here's the issue with reactivity. It can actually feel like momentum. Like I talked about in the intro, when you get into that reactive place, you start feeling the adrenaline, it can feel like momentum. It can feel strong. It can feel powerful. Why? Because we're evolutionary hunters. When we are full of adrenaline, when we are in fight or flight, we are supposed to feel powerful because that's a place where, evolutionarily, we knew we were going to end up. Whether you believe in intelligent design or evolution or whatever, the big bang, doesn't matter. Just fast-forward to when human beings were here and the reality is is that that reactivity, that adrenaline response to reactivity, that feeling, bold feeling, strong feeling good is what kept us alive throughout history. It's why the human tribe exists today. It's such a big part of it. It's because we... As evolutionary hunters, when there's conflict, we actually rise to the occasion.

I have people all the time tell me, you know, when there's conflict, I feel clearer or I feel better or I feel like I'm more connected, like the world moves in slow motion. I can make better decisions. Well, here's the reality. For people like us, we're better at it than most, but it doesn't mean that that's where our superpower lies. See, reactivity in any situation robs momentum because here's what we have to understand about getting into a reactive state. When we are fighting, when we're reactive, when we're overwhelmed, when there's too much going on, we get into that place of fight or flight. And included in fight or flight is a narrowing of perspective, the future pulls closer, options seem fewer, it feels like there's a lot higher sense of urgency. So, when we are reactive, we literally make decisions in the moment with a shorter time span and shorter view of what's possible. So, we are in a limited decision-making capacity.

That client that I had that was waking up every morning and going... Or not every morning, but would go on Facebook to get into a fight, he was inviting a window of diminished decision-making into his life every day that he did that. And when you look at the reality behind fight or fight, that's exactly what happens, and reactivity is a move towards fight or flight. So, this is how this relates to us. We take on clients all the time into our coaching programs that are in a highly reactive state. They're overwhelmed. There's too much going on. Their team's not... They're not getting what they need out of their team. They're frustrated. They feel exposed.

They feel vulnerable. They are reactive. Along with a lot of those things, they're dehydrated. They're not taking care of themselves. They're not eating right. So, we take a holistic approach. We help them get the right strategic plan in place, the right system in place, their team gets aligned. We help them get aligned and when we can get a client out of reactivity, it's amazing what they're capable of in their businesses.

We have people double, triple, quadruple, and much greater the size of their businesses by getting out of reactivity and getting into proactivity. Here's why. When you are physiologically reactive, you will be reactive in your thinking. W hen you are proactive, you can actually create the future you want rather than just reacting to what's served up, and so many entrepreneurs do things that way.

So many entrepreneurs just take the person who comes along. You know, I need to hire an assistant, it's whoever's there. It's reactive. It's like whatever shows up, we're going to take it and try and make it work for us. We need to be proactive. We need to reverse that. Here's the reality, too. When you are reactive, you're much more likely to make bad decisions or lose your temper, overreact, cause some type of an issue in a relationship you have or challenge your relationship with one of your team members or your family members, and here's the problem is that you don't know you're reactive until you are reacting a lot of the time. We don't know... As evolutionary hunters, we're conditioned to be in this place of reactivity, this place of fight or flight. So, you have to fight against it every single day. Here's why this is important. Reactivity is a move towards fight or flight, narrowed thinking, accelerated breathing, an accelerated heart rate, burning more... Heightened metabolism. After a short boost to your immune system, then a long period of kind of challenge for the immune system, being reactive slows everything in your life down. It's a move towards fight or flight, and the closer you get, the more you're going to lose control and overreact.

And then number two, your energy is going to affect the people around you. If you're reactive... As the CEO of your company, if you are reactive, your team will be reactive. I always share with business owners that your team is a reflection of who you are. So, your team is right behind where you are. So, if you are reactive, your team will be reactive as well, and when your team's reactive again, their decision-making narrows. Their window... They are in diminished decision-making capacity because they're reactive. And then here's a big one. This is so important because when you are reactive, you lower transparency for the people around you.

So, in business with your team, with clients, with people you're trying to help, in your family, when you're reactive, that is the last time people are going to give you information. That is not the time where people are going to help, where they're going to be transparent, where they're going to understand what you're trying to communicate to them. It challenges communication in every way, and it lowers transparency for the people around you. So, they won't tell you what's going on. They're not going to communicate to you what's happening. So, as a business owner, if you are reactive, you're not going to find out what's going on with your team, where the challenges are, what you need to address. So, we have to stay out of this place as much as we possibly can, and here's some suggestions.

Number one, I say this all the time. Lower pressure and noise everywhere in your life. The people, the places, and things that are not giving you momentum are taking it away. So, number two, here's what you should do. Create a clear plan in your personal life and in your business. When you have a clear strategic plan that you can communicate to your team, that lowers your reactivity level. You know what I want? When I get reactive about my business... When I start thinking about where are things, are things going the right way, do I need to be doing more, I have those thoughts all the time and I teach people how to get out of that reactive thinking. I go look at our strategic plan and it 100% reassures me we are going in the right direction and we're moving to where we need to be. Then last, teach you team how to not be reactive because if you're going to surround yourself with people and you're trying now to be reactive, if your team is, you will be. So, we do all kinds of things with our team. We teach proper nutrition, hydration, movement, breathing, meditation. We send our team CBD oil so they can experiment with a product that lowers reactivity that actually increases focus for a lot of people. We show them how to do financial planning and understand their personal finances so they get out of financial reactivity.

We do everything we can to surround ourselves with people who aren't reactive as well because here's what you have to understand as an entrepreneur. Your focus, your ability to see, your ability to be present, your ability to understand the opportunities around you is where your success will come from, and when you go into a state of reactivity, all of those things are diminished. If you get reactive and suddenly you have the boost of adrenaline and you feel like you got a lot done or you feel like you were really proactive or a lot happened or whatever those things are, you were working in diminished capacity. You had less of a vision of where you really could go and you probably just got a lot done out of frustration, but you're not moving in any direction or you oftentimes aren't moving in a direction that's proactive, in a direction that you really should.

So, stay out of proactivity and here's what will happen. If you lower pressure and noise and you have a clear plan and you teach your team how to stay out of reactivity and you do those same things, your business and your momentum will go through the roof because when you are no longer reactive, you will see the future in an entirely different way and you will see more possibilities in the present and be more aware of which one to choose. And when your team is less reactive, you have a second layer or... And if you have leaders on your team, you have a third layer. Depending on how big your team is, you have multiple layers of people who are less reactive and able to see opportunity, solve problems, move things forward, and ensure that your company stays in moment.

This is how it really works. Reactivity robs momentum. When you can be more present, more aware, you will stay in momentum more often and achieve the outcomes you want. Lower pressure and noise, have a clear plan, and teach your team how to stop being reactive, you'll see your entire business moving a different direction. And if you're ready to actually do this, to get out of reactivity, to start proactively looking to your business, to look at the right opportunities and put them down on a plan and create a strategic plan, execute that plan, and move forward creating the infrastructure of your business, reach out to us.

Go to, answer a few questions for my team. We will give you a copy of our ebook, Billionaire Code Decoded, which will show you the journey entrepreneurs take from zero to a hundred million, and if you want, you can... You will have an opportunity to setup a call with my team where we will spend time with you to show you what your business really needs right now, and if we're a good solution, we will show you how we can help you as well. Go to We look forward to hearing from you.

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