Saturday’s Better Endings: Let’s Keep the Conversation Going!


Since last week, Denise shared her concept of “rewind” (Guest Blog, November 21), an approach that anyone can use to achieve a better ending.  When a couple or any people speak or act unthinkingly  in a way that fosters conflict or a misunderstanding, they can agree to a rewind–start the conversation over–like waliking out of a room then knocking to come back in and start over. This way they can re-vision their interaction more in keeping with a better ending. Lovely!

Brystalite commented on Denise’s idea (she had applied the idea of rewind to road rage), adding a similar approach she calls “pause”.  Brystalite uses Pause to encourage herself to think before she might otherwise react negatively to a provocation, such as another driver behaving badly.

Corinne’s Guest Blog on Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 28) regards better endings as a spiritual principle: better endings are those that are in harmony with “Divine Order”. Corinne says we can recognize a Better Ending pathway as one that offers ‘least resistance’ to such harmonic behavior (my apology to a pun on your last name, Corinne Harmon!)

This is rich material, all of you. Thanks for sharing your insights!

Let’s keep the conversation going…. I invite all of you following or reading this blog to Comment, to send in your own perspective on Better Endings, and to submit your Better Endings stories on our weekly topic themes. By the way,  tonight is the deadline for your Better Endings story on re-visioning a Movie Better Ending. (You can create a gravatar image to share your photo or graphic id with us by going to

You can FOLLOW this blog to receive our daily Better Endings posts for free by email.  I invite you to invite your friends to join our conversation. I hope you will remember to practice daily Better Endings–let us know how that works for you in your life! – Linda

Our First Guest Blog: Road Rage or Better Endings?

by Denise Naughton

When I think of better endings it brings to mind human conflict. Not human conflict on a world scale, but on a personal scale—my scale. When a conversation, or e-mail goes into the toilet, I always go back and wonder how I could have changed the negative outcome. Because life is cyclical I know all opportunity will come my way again, and if I’m paying attention I’ll be able to make a better ending.

Road rage is a perfect example of getting new chances. I’m not sure what infuriates me when someone cuts me off. Is it ego, adrenaline rush which equals fear, which turns to anger? Or is it interruption to my private time or a wake up call showing me I’m not paying attention? Is it someone invading a space that isn’t mine to begin with? It could be all the above and all at the same time. Curses begin, and then I get angry with myself for getting angry with a stranger. Maybe the anonymity of being in a car and being able to yell to someone who is long gone gives me some sense of power, but ultimately it does not give me self-satisfaction with me, and it’s me I always have to answer to.

I know, though, that I will get another opportunity, and even in the same road trip, to have a better ending. If someone cuts in front of me then it must be for a reason.  The driver feels safe to do this. They weren’t paying attention, they didn’t see me, and the need to be in another lane is important, and realized too late. We’ve all done it. I can give that driver a break.  If I can be courteous in any other situation, then why not on the road, and have a better ending over and over again.

Of course, there are even smaller and more personal moments that need to be addressed. When an intimate friend says something that pushes a button, I react without thought—insulting, nasty, or go for an even bigger or tenderer button for that person. It’s all done in the moment but the impact is tremendous. This unhappy ending needs to be repaired immediately. How can it be done?

I once listened to a couple talk about their button moments that would come up in their relationship, and the trick that they had put together. And we all know how quickly the fire can spread when it comes to living with a person. It isn’t that they don’t have those fast and furious times, but they have now learned to take a breath and ask, literally, for a rewind. “This is what I really meant to say”. “This is why I reacted in the cruel or curt way that I did, and I’d like a rewind”.  I’d like to change the words, the intent behind them, and bring in love and kindness”. I’ve been practicing that theory, and I’ve discovered that a rewind can change everything, and even prevent the negative flow from ever happening.

I’ve now applied the rewind technique to so many aspects of my life, so that no matter what I can always create a better ending.


Denise Naughton is an Author and an A.B.D., Ph.D. Candidate at Union Institute and University in Cincinnati.  Her Ph.D. dissertation is on representation of penal colonists in Australian Cinema as Shadow archetype figures.