Cause and Effect

by RJ

in Self Improvement

Sir Issac NewtonNewton’s law of motions states, every action has an equal and opposite reaction.

Another way to explain Newton’s Law is that every Cause has an Effect.

The decisions or actions we take today, no matter how small, have consequences.

Nobody wakes up one day and decides that they want to be poor. Being poor is a consequence of thousands of decisions that came before, not just one.

You’re The Captain

Imagine you’re the captain of a ship. You’re one mile away from your destination and you’re compass is off a few degrees.

Being that you’re so close to your destination, a broken compass isn’t that big of deal. Once you get in view of your destination, you’ll make tiny corrections and get to where you need to go.

Now, imagine sailing from California to Japan with a broken compass. How far off of your destination do you think you’ll be?

Hundreds of miles! You’ll not only miss your port, you’ll miss the entire country.

This is the Effect of bad decisions, made time and time again.

As a member of Gen Y, you’re barely off the coast of California right now. You have a long road ahead of you.

If your compass has been off by a few degrees so far, you can easily fix it.

If decide to wait to fix your compass, it gets harder. Each day, you’ll be farther off your target.

Cause and Effect Exercise

Take a piece of paper and draw a line vertically down the middle. Label the top of the left side, Cause. Label the top of the right side, Effect.

Now, write down all the decisions you remember making in the last 24 hours on the left side.

Don’t worry how small of a decision it was. Your goal is to come up with at least 20 decisions, which shouldn’t take long.

Now, on the right side list the effect of each of your decisions.

If you slept in, what’s the effect? If you worked out, what’s the effect?

What was the effect of what you ate? What was the effect of the projects you choose to work on? What was the effect of the social interactions you had?

When I do this, it’s like recalibrating my compass. It’s a way to make sure that I’m headed straight towards my target.

I encourage you to try this yourself. You’ll be amazed how many small decisions have lead you to where you’re right now. And please, share your thoughts in the comments.


Photo by: Harlqueen

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

GregNo Gravatar August 25, 2011 at 12:16 pm

I can appreciate that perhaps you didn’t like the tone I took with my original post but hopefully you will understand my point deserved to be addressed. The idea that poverty is relatable to a moral choice is plain wrong. Please understand that the idea, as written, is offensive: “The symptoms of poorness would include lack of money, no ambition, and the inability to learn new things.” Being poor only factors in one condition, and that is lack of money. The causes of poverty are copious. The fact you state poverty is the cause of laziness and an inability to learn are wholly false and a sham of an idea. There are billions of poor yet ambitious, intelligent people on this planet. This is a clear bias and I hope you’ll address it.


RJNo Gravatar August 30, 2011 at 9:57 am

My purpose was to use health as an analogy. Which looking back was a mistake because a lot of aspects of health are uncontrollable. I do apologize if that was offensive by any means to you.

I edited the post. The first paragraph was overshadowing the point I was trying to make.

Thanks for your concern.


karaNo Gravatar August 30, 2011 at 12:38 pm

And we have, yet again, the middle-class, white, male privileged point of view of what keeps people in poverty.

I suggest you get out of your entitled, middle class life and spend time real time with real people in real poverty. Then come back and reread what you wrote and see how very wrong it is.


MeganNo Gravatar September 1, 2011 at 5:26 pm

Maybe “in debt” would be a better analogy. “No one wakes up one day and decides they want to be thousands of dollars in debt.”

On a completely un-related note, I think it’s funny how some people prefer to say “no one” and other prefer to say “nobody.”


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