According to Harvard Business blog, most of our interactions are governed by a simple event-reaction-outcome chain, where our knee-jerk response leads to an often undesirable outcome. For better results, they propose tweaking your thought chain to focus primarily on the outcome.
Photo by Pascal Vuylsteker.
Harvard Business Blog’s Peter Bregman writes that the event-reaction-outcome chain governs most of our spontaneous action.
Something or someone hooks us and we react. Someone yells at us, we yell back and create the outcome of a damaged relationship. It’s not that we want a damaged relationship, it’s just what happens when we yell back. And that’s the problem. The most important part of the chain, arguably the only part that really matters, the outcome, is collateral damage from our reaction. It’s not intentional. We’re reacting to the event. The outcome is simply fallout.
To avoid this fallout, Peter suggests reacting to the outcome and not the event itself. Visually, this would look as follows: event→outcome→reaction. More simply, “just because the event catalyzed your action, doesn’t mean it should determine it. How you react can and should be determined by the outcome; by the future you want to create.” And if you’d like to create a future with less mistakes, try taking a calculated pause before making an important decision.
To Get What You Want, Don’t Go with Your Gut [Harvard Business Blog]