I’ve often read Event + Response = Outcome. To get a desired outcome we just have to respond in the right way. I don’t know about you, but frequently my response seems to happen without checking in with me first.
James Clear sheds some light on why it’s so hard to get in front of our responses in his book, Atomic Habits. It really comes down to our automatic responses — our habits. Habits reflect the actions that frequently get us what we want. They’re also tied to our sense of identity, which is why they’re so hard to change. He wrote, “The more you repeat a behavior, the more you reinforce the identity associated with that behavior.”
This matters because if you can pinpoint why people are doing what they’re doing, you can respond better and get outcomes you want. These seven truths help me understand where people are coming from and figure out how to best respond:
- Environment causes events (and triggers habits).
- How events are perceived shapes beliefs.
- Grouped beliefs are labeled as values.
- Values drive actions.
- Repeated actions shape identity (and form habits—automatic responses).
- Sense of identity governs responses.
- Responses drive outcomes.
Core beliefs are like invisible glasses that only let us see certain choices. We can only choose from the options we see and those choices produce the outcome we get.
What people see determines where they go.
Feature image by Phillip Konchar
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