Considering Reasons

I’ve been thinking about reasons a lot lately. Reasons why we do things, and reasons why we don’t.  Reasons that make sense, reasons that make no sense. Reasons why it doesn’t matter whether or not our reasons make any sense in the first place. Reasons why it does matter, at least sometimes.

Decisions we make that are driven by reasons of fear, or anger, or hope, or compassion.

Reasons drawn from the past, and reasons that are completely in the moment.

Instantaneous, spontaneous reasons.

Long- and well-considered reasons.

OVER-considered reasons.

My last post (Reasons to Clean) actually began as two simultaneous lists: “Reasons to Say Yes” and “Reasons to Say No.” Those two lists were coming to me as I was thinking about various decisions that I, or people I know, have made or are considering.

And yes, I was cleaning at the time. So in between the dusting and decluttering, I kept running to my computer to write down more reasons to say yes or no – in the broad sense. Why do I say yes to this, and no to that? Why does this person say yes a lot, when she might be better served by saying no? Why did that person say no when I think he really wanted to say yes?

And then that got me thinking about reasons for all kinds of other things. And whether or not there are such things as “good” or “bad” reasons.

So. I have these two lists I’m working on: Reasons to Say Yes, and Reasons to Say No (which seem to continually lead to other lists), and I may share those at some point.

But I’m also curious: What are your reasons to say yes? What are your reasons to say no? What are your reasons to _________ (fill in the blank)? How do you reason your reasons?

Why do you do what you do? Why don’t you do what you don’t?

Write a couple of sentences below – whatever occurs to you first. Leave me a message, or shoot me an email.

Or, if you’re feeling ambitious, write me something longer – a list, a story, a poem, a debate. Write a recipe. Or a manifesto, or a rant. Or post a photo that says it all.

Reasons to say yes.
Reasons to say no.
Reasons to ____________.

What comes to mind?

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4 thoughts on “Considering Reasons

  1. Why do we do what we do? I often ask myself that question. Are we Hard-Wired to make a certain decision ( yes, or no) is it a chemical thing, like getting a sugar rush, or is it a fear ( of failure? )

    When I look at reasons, I look at historical context, especially in my own life. If I made a similar decision like that before, what was the outcome? Did I like it? Would I do it again? Did it hurt me in the long run ( divorce anyone? ) or did it just make life easier?

    I have often said in preparation of decisions I make in my 40’s its predicated by the experiences I have had in my life from the simple way of changing how I sign a check. Really.

    I feel a profound decision I made years ago to go from signing the back of a check ( hello corporate america- thanks for pittance) to the front of a check ( hello Payroll! ) has made the biggest impact. It has literally shaped every reason that I act upon. Do you stay at work a little longer each day cause you know nobody else will, or do you go home and spend an hour with kids, family, or the TV?

    Being forced on a daily basis to “forage for myself” has made me a logical practical and sometimes hardend ( hard-headed ) man. I long for the days when I could take the time and list reasons for what I do.

    I envy you if that is still your situation.

  2. Corey, thanks for your thoughts. It seems we all have those decisions that really affect us in big ways, for years after the decision was made.

    I don’t know about taking the time to make lists of reasons – sometimes I don’t have time for that either (and sometimes I later wish I had found more time for thinking things through better prior to making said decision). On the other hand, sometimes I take too long making lists of reasons when, in my heart, I know what I want, and continuing to come up with “reasons” just confuses the issue.

    Thanks again for reading – and responding!

  3. I don’t do things because of the fear of the unknown, and I do things based on familiarity and the feeling of being comfortable. It’s a harsh and unhealthy cycle for me.
    Also, not to get religious or biblical or whatever but Romans 7:15 always stuck with me. “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.”

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