50 Reaction Quotes About Instincts and Emotions

Dive deeper into the complexity of human reactions with these reaction quotes.

Depending on the type of stimuli, we can express a range of reactions that illustrate the depth of human emotion.

Human reactions are related to the science of neurobiology. 

Like the fight-or-flight response, reactions are often instinctive.

Both our nervous system and brain play critical roles in processing stimuli.

Chemical messengers and complex neural pathways can create an impact on our reactions.

Learn more with the reaction quotes below!

Variability in Reactions

Human reactions could vary depending on the individual influence of a person.

The variability depends on the factors like: 

  • Experiences 
  • Culture 
  • Personality

If a stimulus creates a strong response in one person, it might not do the same for another person.

These are the unique behaviors of the people, which depend on various aspects.

Internal Stimuli

Our internal memories, self-perceptions, and thoughts can also create an impact on our reactions.

Cognitive processes involve the appraisal and interpretation of various situations.

During this process, our internal world interacts with external stimuli.

It helps to create a complex interplay of emotions, thoughts, and reactions.

External Stimuli

Usually, our reactions are triggered by external stimuli.

These include:

  • Events 
  • People 
  • Environmental factors

For instance, an abrupt noise could startle us.

As a reaction to such an external stimulus, we sometimes jump or get shocked. 

On the other hand, positive stimuli also play a critical role when it comes to creating a reaction. 

For example, when we see a loved one, a smile appears on our face showing a feeling of joy.

Regulation and Modulation of Reactions

Although there are certain reactions that tend to be instinctive or automatic, humans are capable of modulating or regulating some of their reactions.

This self-regulation makes it possible for us to adapt to various situations.

As a result, we can manage our reactions and emotions. 

It also allows us to make conscious choices about how we respond to a stimulus.

Some techniques for this include: 

Top 10 Reaction Quotes

Here is our list of the top 10 reaction quotes on their importance.

1. “Football is a reaction sport.” Ed Reed

2. “Everything is a reaction.” Robyn Hitchcock

3. “As an artist, I want a reaction.” Chester Bennington

4. “Creativity is about a reaction.” Nicolas Winding Refn

5. “I take audience reaction very seriously.” Neena Gupta

6. “Fascism is nothing but capitalist reaction.” Leon Trotsky

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7. “My natural reaction is to smile through things.” Hannah Brown

8. “Hate is a learned reaction, and it can be unlearned.” Kerry Kennedy

9. “I always seem to inspire a strong reaction one way or the other.” — Nathan Lane

10. “We work because it’s a chain reaction; each subject leads to the next.” Charles Eames

Reaction Quotes On Reaction to Different Things

People’s responses to various stimuli vary greatly. These quotes cover a wide range of instinctive reactions to various situations.

11. “The first reaction to truth is hatred.” — Tertullian

12. “It’s not stress that kills us; it is our reaction to it.” — Hans Selye

13. “I found my voice was a reaction to all that voice stuff.” — Kathy Acker

14. “I can only be instinctive in my reaction to Shakespeare.” — David Farr

15. “It’s not the situation… It’s your reaction to the situation.” — Robert Conklin

16. “People in business tend to have an instinctive reaction to people.” — Nigel Farage

17. “It is always the instantaneous reaction to oneself that produces a photograph.” — Robert Frank

18. “A lot of what the ‘Culture’ is about is a reaction to all the science fiction I was reading in my very early teens.” — Iain Banks

19. “I had a strong visceral reaction to the ‘Moonlight’ script, partly because I felt I knew all of these characters.” — Janelle Monae

20. “You know, my main reaction to this money thing is that it’s humorous, all the attention to it, because it’s hardly the most insightful or valuable thing that’s happened to me.” Steve Jobs

Action and Reaction Quotes

The following quotes address the idea that action and reaction are two sides of the same coin, each greatly influencing our lives and the world we live in.

21. “Action and reaction are equal and opposite.” Gertrude Stein

22. “A crazy action only works if there’s a great reaction.” — Brett Gelman

23. “Comedy is basically action, but you get the reaction on laughter.” — Sajid Khan

24. “The starship thing is really political action and reaction, the natural outgrowth of Volunteers.” — Paul Kantner

25. “A life of reaction is a life of slavery, intellectually and spiritually. One must fight for a life of action, not reaction.” — Rita Mae Brown

26. “By action and reaction do we become strong or weak, according to the character of our thoughts and mental states. Fear is the deadly nightshade of the mind.” — Edward Walker

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27. “Action and reaction, ebb and flow, trial and error, change – this is the rhythm of living. Out of our over-confidence, fear; out of our fear, clearer vision, fresh hope. And out of hope, progress.” — Bruce Barton

28. “Religion is simply one of a multitude of factors – economic, political, cultural, social, tribal, racial – which shape and drive human action and reaction and often is the least important of those factors.” — Mehdi Hasan

29. “I do have moments when I feel insecure. I do have moments when I feel jealous, and that’s normal. It’s a very normal emotion. It’s your action and your attitude and your reaction to that that is important.” — Anushka Sharma

30. “I have long argued that ISIS and Assad are not separate problems to be chosen between, but are action and reaction, cause and symptom, chicken and egg: impossible to untangle no matter how much we might like to.” — Jo Cox

Knee-Jerk Reaction Quotes

The focus of these quotes is on various knee-jerk reactions—the immediate, automatic responses to situations.

31. “I think there’s a knee-jerk reaction to things from parents.” — Spike Jonze

32. “My theory is that there’s a knee-jerk reaction against technology in movie making.” — Matthew Vaughn

33. “It’s tough being an actor making music because even I have a knee-jerk reaction to that.” — John Hawkes

34. “There’s always a knee-jerk reaction in our business to analyze and determine why something didn’t work.” — Nina Tassler

35. “We live in a world that builds people’s expectations so high, so when the downside comes, there is a knee-jerk reaction.” — Sam Allardyce

36. “Politics means facing up to hard choices and facing down prejudice, short-termism, the easy, tempting court of knee-jerk public reaction.” — Charles Kennedy

37. “In minority communities, there’s a sensitivity, often a knee-jerk reaction, to critical representations. There’s a misunderstanding of what an artist does.” — Junot Diaz

38. “Well, I try not to view things through a prism of anti-Semitism because often, people will use that as a sort of knee-jerk reaction to any criticism of Jews.” — Jack Abramoff

39. “There’s a knee-jerk reaction in Washington when something isn’t perfect just to add more money, add more personnel, it’ll all be OK. That’s not true, especially with complex issues like veterans’ health care.” — Dan Crenshaw

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40. “It’s hard because there’s a little bit of PTSD from when you’re a struggling actor, working at a restaurant or living in a garage. There’s a little bit of an inherent knee-jerk reaction to say, ‘Yes, yes, yes, please just give me a job.’” — Glen Powell

Thought-Provoking Reaction Quotes On Cause, Effect, and Consequence

These quotes highlight the idea that every action we take has a consequence and show how important it is to think about the possible results before acting.

41. “As in nature, so in politics: Every action has a reaction.” — Anne Applebaum

42. “To every action there is always opposed an equal reaction.” Isaac Newton

43. “Government is like physics, you know – for every action, there’s a reaction.” — Jesse Ventura

44. “Politics follows the lines of physics: every action creates an equal and opposite reaction.” — John Avlon

45. “There is a price to pay for most of our actions. For every action, there is a reaction.” — Giancarlo Esposito

46. “I’m always amazed that people are shocked when their despicable action causes an equally despicable reaction.” — CM Punk

47. “Don’t be gullible; use life before it uses you. Understand there are no free lunches, and for every action you take, there’s a reaction.” — Sylvester Stallone

48. “Try to remember that every action you take in life will have a consequence and a reaction for other people and that it’s the same on social.” — Katie Piper

49. “For every action, there will always be a reaction. Actually, for people who do wrong to me or hurt me, something unpleasant surely happens to them. So, I don’t have faith in taking revenge.” — Zareen Khan

50. “Military deployments have never been something to enjoy, but the consequence of the actions, the shared nature of the sacrifices, and the nobility of the cause are invigorating. To be clear, I’m not talking about the killing and the death; rather, the sense of purpose that pervades every action, reaction, and outcome.” — Pete Hegseth

Which One of these Reaction Quotes is your Favorite? 

Human reactions are fascinating. 

Our reactions are normally shaped by our experiences, and themselves can influence our thoughts and emotions.

If you have found a favorite reaction quote from above, share it with us via the comments section!

We are looking forward to hearing from you!

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