Positive Consequences

I have always been fascinated with the word Success. I have read countless descriptions and definitions of the word, but I have yet to find a description that is all encompassing. Success means different things to different people.


In blogging here at Success Begins Today, we have talked about a myriad of things that lead to success, but it is hard to put into words the exact meaning.

The dictionary says Success is

the favorable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavors.

the attainment of wealth, position, honors, or the like.

Yet those words tend to imply that success is a destination. If that is true, then it begs the question… are we a failure until we reach the destination? I like Authur Ashe’s definition better…

Success is a journey, not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome.

In my experience, I would agree with that statement. So many times the journey itself is the key element. The important thing about the journey is the direction. Is it leading to success or is it leading to failure.

For the new year, I would like to introduce the concept of consequences.

The definition of Consequence is

the effect, result, or outcome of something occurring earlier:
The accident was the consequence of reckless driving.
an act or instance of following something as an effect, or outcome.
Eating less at each meal led to positive consequences.

In simple terms a path of action can have three different outcomes or consequences.

1. Positive Consequences. The path leads in a positive direction towards success

2. Negative Consequences. The path leads in a negative direction towards failure

3. Unintended Consequences. The path led in a different direction than planned.

This simple concept can help us judge our actions and goals.

Let me give you a simple example of each one.

1. If you save 10% of your income each paycheck and put it in savings, the consequences are very positive. In times of trouble or in retirement you’ll have a nest egg to draw from.

2. If you spend more that your paycheck by 10% by charging things on a credit card it can have very negative consequences in the long term by creating a growing debt balance with high interest.

3. Lending money to a friend or family member may seem like a helpful thing to do but may have the unintended consequences of anger and broken relationships if the debt is not repaid.

It is my premise that doing activities and setting goals with positive consequences will lead a person to success.

Over the next few months we’ll take a look at a variety of things that lead to positive consequences and come up with a rating system.

For these items we’ll use the hashtag #poscon on Twitter.

Question: Can you list some items that have Positive Consequences


  1. says

    I think only part of it is the journey which is a slightly different concept. The journey serves as a way to teach you about yourself, what you are good at, bad at, areas to improve. Struggles, achievement, etc…I think most people define success for how it makes them feel – accomplished, elated, validated, etc…Ultimately success provides confidence and momentum to people so they can do other things.

    You are on to something related to consequences and I look forward to seeing how you evolve that.

    • says

      I think you are right, Marc. The journey is certainly been a learning tool for me. When you have small successes along the way, they build confidence and allow you to move to the next level. Failures can also be a wonderful learning tool, if you don't let them stop you from continuing on your path.

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