Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.
It may actually have come from psychologist Rollo May’s 1963 behavioral science article “Freedom and Responsibility Re-Examined,” though the wording varies somewhat.
In Freedom and Destiny he wrote:
Freedom is the capacity to pause in the face of stimuli from many directions at once and, in this pause, to throw one’s weight toward this response rather than that one.