Do not react

The Drill of drills.

The greatest of all self-help exercises is:

Do not react

Refuse to react when you are looked at. That is, refuse all macro-scale movement.

(This goes to show that you can use Existentialist vocabulary profitably while spelling-out the elements of a DRILL and the theory of why it works. The presence of another person causes you to look at yourself as an object and see your world as it appears to the other. The recognition of the subjectivity in others effects violent reaction. This DRILL grapples with this problem at the root. Resolve not to react!)

When you encounter The Look and become aware of other minds, you will feel an urge to look away, look down, pretend that you were looking past the person’s face, etc. When you encounter The Look, feelings arise. Throat vibrations and belly feelings arise. A shadow pushes on the back of your head. Resentment for past rejections arises. You feel your reaction to their looking as a kind of pain.

You encounter The Look. You have a feeling. And then! And then the movement that comes after the feeling feels like will. You (are compelled to) look away. You feel bad and look away.

Here’s the Drill. You look outwards and make eye-contact. You say ALL IS WELL, ALL IS WELL with whatever feeling happens to be linked to to that assertion when it’s true. This is the one place where reality can be spoken into existence. Given that the world isn’t fully baked until something is said about it, say the thing that helps you reach your goals.

How simple. Why don’t we do it? The reason is that we think that the shitty interpretation will make us happier. We do this to motivate ourselves. It's not bad. New Agers who soothe themselves when upset only hurt their chances at goal attainment.

Do not react (long version)

  1. Look forward and let yourself make eye-contact.
  2. When the feeling to look away (or otherwise react) comes refuse all movement.
  3. Feel the urge and make that the object of awareness.
  4. Watch it pass away.

Super Drill: follow-up exercise

  1. Not reacting (do the Super Drill) creates pain!
  2. Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain! Not reacting is pain!
  3. Resolve to not react to the pain of not reacting.
  4. Then you are done.