Choice and Consequence

Thanks for your patience while I took a break over Christmas and New Years. Ready now to re-engage!


We've have been exploring transition in the last couple of posts and I will continue that theme here. As you recall, transition is a passage from one state to another. Generally, there are five transitions that we are involved in:


• work


• relationship


• health


• finances


• identity


This post explores the cause of transition–choice and consequence.


Choice is a decision-making process that moves us towards what we desire. It is a vehicle of transition. For example, we may make a choice to change a job because we no longer find our current employment satisfying. The decision to make a change, when is supported by action, generates a transition.


Similarly, we may decide that we want to enjoy a committed relationship. We use the medium of choice to create an opportunity for that relationship to occur.


When we employ choice as a means of transition, it supports authorship. Authorship comes from the root word "authority." It means that we are the cause of transition and that we take responsibility for our choices.


The second cause of transition is consequence. Consequence is a result of choices made, not made, or made by others. This is also a powerful igniter of transition.


For example, your finances take a hit from the collapse of the banking system in your country or interest rate hikes by the federal regulator and the banks. As a result, your can no longer afford your mortgage payments or your lose your job in an economic downturn. These are choices made by others that carry consequences for you. Transition begins whether we like it, agree with it, or not.


Or, let's say you smoke and have done so for many years. You know you shouldn't but through magical thinking, you have convinced yourself that you are invulnerable. As a result, you wind up with a dark spot on your chest x-ray. A health crisis ensues throwing you, and your loved ones, into transition.


Consequences are stimulus for a more challenging transition. Seemingly, consequences create transition without our permission. Consequence, then, is the effect that we experience.


Either by choice or consequence, we are always in one or more transitions. In our next post on this subject, I'll explore what we can learn from transition, which is a vehicle for transformation.


© Patrick O’Neill 2010. All rights reserved.

Posted on January 16, 2011 and filed under Uncategorized.