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The law of unintended consequences


This was a phrase, coined years ago originally applied to public policy which frequently yielded results that were unexpected. Any client in anger  management class is experiencing “unintended consequences” It is the last place they expected to be.

Sometimes good things happen, we call that luck. Or it could be unexpected, a man who is needy craves a woman’s affection ends up being disrespected and dumped, or as these clients know the result is very perverse, taking them to a very uncomfortable result.

The cause of these consequences can be ignorance, or error that an outburst had worked in the past so it should work every time, most often it is the man’s immediate interest that dominates overlooking other’s interests. Often it is a clash of ideas. She will do as I want ignores that she will do as she wants. It can even be a self fulfilling prophecy: I expect the relationship to break down so he keeps doing everything to make the relationship break down.

The underlying premise of life is everything is in relationship to something or somebody else. If ignored when it comes to anger can be a very costly mistake. Thinking of consequences first (not after) is the smart way to confront stuff getting out of control.

Nigel Turner

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One comment on “The law of unintended consequences

  1. […] The law of unintended consequences (whysoangry.ca) […]

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