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Equal and opposite reactions

Push and pull. Up and down. Back and forth. How often have we felt this type of dynamic? In conversation, in relationships, in our lives, and in everyday interactions, there's a give and a get.

In both positive and negative ways, we respond to each other. We give hugs when we get hugs. We approach others who seem like they are friendly already. We call those who call us back. We give a kind word when we get one. Virtuous cycles beget more virtuous cycles.

And on the non-virtuous side of cycles? Well, he did it first, didn't he? Or we say, "it's because she did that, that I told her off." We say "you're welcome" to "thank you," and get pissed off when one of those niceties isn't returned.

Newton's third law states that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. In scientific terms, this means that in every interaction, there is a pair of forces acting on any two objects that are interacting. The size of the forces o…