GrasshopperNotes.com - Thoughts for inspired living


August 31, 2017

Reason for Concern

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 5:52 am

Lion TamerThrowback Thursday has given me a reason to repost a blog I wrote 10 years ago.

‘Tis the season to use reasons . . .

This blog has nothing to do with Christmas. This is about a misperception we humans have. Reasons have a year round and life-long season. Reminds me of a story . . .

When I conduct weight loss seminars, it is shocking to see the belief that a large number of intelligent people carry around in their mind that has no basis in reality. Someone will say, “I want to change this fat into muscle.” When I probe further, they really think that fat becomes muscle. Fat is fat and muscle is muscle. One never becomes the other one. When one dissipates, the other is more visible.

Then one day The Grasshopper spoke and said,

“Reasons have nothing to do with behavior.”

That got me curious as to how often we justify behavior after the fact with a reason. It’s a basic software package that comes with the human mind. “The reason I’m flunking algebra is because the teacher doesn’t like me . . . is the toughest teacher in the city . . . all the kids are failing . . . blah, etc.” The unreasoned answer to “Why are you flunking algebra?” is “because I’m flunking algebra.” The mind will never run out of reasons. It’s a reasoning machine.

The answer to “why” is always “because.” Perhaps this fact alone will get you to form the habit of stop asking “why” questions. “Why” always gets a reason. Behavior is behavior and reasons are reasons and when one dissipates, the other is more visible.

I’ll admit it’s fun to muse as to the reason why someone did something but the answers can never be trusted. No matter how talented a lion tamer you are, never turn your back on Leo.

We act and we justify. Notice how often that people don’t agree with your reasoning for your behavior. Then they come up with their reasons and the debate goes on forever as to who has the right reason. Reasons are like pregnant cats – they are the gift that keeps on giving.

Here’s a little secret I’ve discovered. When you acknowledge your behavior without issuing a host of reasons, the other person stops reasoning as well and the pointless debate ceases.

How many public figures – politicians, actors, athletes – would end the debate and soften their fate if they stopped issuing reasons for their actions. Flip Wilson was a funny man and his popular phrase, “The devil made me do it,” is the battle cry of the reasoning process. Reasons always throw kerosene onto an already blazing fire.

Today’s blog is a message for all of us to be more mindful about our penchant to reason away reality.

All the best,

John



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