The three levels of consequencesMarch 24, 2022 2022-03-24 20:02
The three levels of consequences
Every action comes with a consequence. Sometimes, these consequences are what we like, and other times, they don’t match our expectations.
We always have a choice to take action and get the outcomes we want. Every behaviour comes with positive intent, and the feedback we get always results in learning.
According to the author and coach David Goldsmith, there are always three levels of consequences for our actions.
From the book “Principles” by Ray Dalio, David suggests that when we decide to act, the first order of consequence is always related to our immediate wants and desires.
For example, if we see a yummy dessert on the table and decide to eat it, the first order of consequence is all about our sensory satisfaction.
The second level of consequence is usually related to the adverse effects of our decisions. We ponder what could go wrong or what would happen if our fears came true. In the dessert example, the second-order consequence could be related to our health and wellness impacts.
The third level is usually long term and focuses on understanding the harmful effects of our unconscious indulgences. We can use our insights to create action plans and strategies that provide us with avenues for growth and learning.
The third order of consequence for dessert example could be to resist the temptations to eat unhealthy food, build a healthy lifestyle and focus on our physical and mental wellbeing.
Everyone faces difficult situations and unfavourable environments. Knowing what kind of consequences we will face can be a game-changer.