Verb of the Week - Respond
By Donna Ambler on 13 May 2014
Somebody whose opinion I value gave me some sound advice last week. She told me to respond - not react - to a situtation that was concerning me. It took me a minute for the advice to sink in, but it's a reminder that will stay with me.
When I started to think more about this advice and searched the internet, I found there is a whole field of thinking on mindfulness and other psychological thinking that deals with our reactions and recommends more appropriate responses.
By definition, to react is to act in response to something; to respond in a particular way. It's a verb that dates back to the md-17th century, with Latin origins from the verb reagere, meaning done again.
In contrast, the verb respond has 16th century origins and its definition is:
- to say or write something as an answer to a question or request
- to do something as a reaction to something that has happened or been done
- to have a good or desired reaction to something.