This one I learned from a paramedic. He said it came in very useful in panic situations and places like the emergency room. There, if you just react, you could end up killing someone. Better to take a moment to stop and size up the situation before acting. The problem is, you’re often in panic yourself. So you need to just stop in your tracks and restrain yourself, so that your brain can catch up to your feet.

In ordinary life, the experience of sitting there quietly while the world around you is going berserk takes real fortitude. You can feel yourself growing wiser and more mature as you do it. Every moment, you can feel yourself pulling the reins and holding back the wild horses inside you that want to go running wild. Once those reins feel a little slack, that’s when you can get up and go about your business—with a head on your shoulders.

In Kabbalah language, this state is called mochin d’gadlut—literally meaning “large brains.” That’s when the mind controls the emotions, rather than the other way around.