Achieve Better Outcomes by Using a Simple Formula

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Learn how one idea can help you achieve better professional outcomes for business success and career advancement

Achieve better outcomes: Inevitable challenges

As of this writing, my wife and I are celebrating the third anniversary of It seems only fitting that I devote this article to a lesson that has helped me in the daily development of this business. I sincerely hope that it can help you, whether you’re a business owner striving for better outcomes in a competitive market or an employee seeking further advancement.

Adopt a simple formula to achieve better outcomes

In his book, “The Success Principles,” author, motivational speaker, and publisher Jack Canfield shared many lessons on the patterns found in personal and professional success. One of my favorite lessons is a formula for moving towards better outcomes for a happier, healthier, and more prosperous future:

E + R = O

The formula expresses the idea that Event + Response = Outcome. It’s a healthy perspective developed by Los Angeles psychotherapist, Dr. Robert Resnick, but popularized by Canfield in his book.

The basic idea is that every outcome you experience in life is the result of how you have responded to an event in your life. Your response may have resulted in a business success or failure, financial gain or loss, better health or chronic illness, a happy marriage or bitter divorce, joy or frustration. Consequently, if you want to achieve better outcomes, you’ll need to change how you respond to the various events in your life.

Better outcomes: Problems and Solutions

Blaming is too easy

When people don’t like the outcomes they experience, most choose to blame the event for their unfavorable results.

Let’s face it; an excuse fulfills the internal desire of so many, no matter how bad the outcome, to say, “It’s not my fault.” For example, if the business you started isn’t succeeding, you can always blame the economy, or the local market, or a lack of capital. You can even blame your local elected officials or the current administration in Washington, D.C.

Sure, these factors exist, and they may impact you. However, if they were the deciding factor in whether someone succeeded or not, everyone affected by them would fail. The above factors may have contributed to the failure of some, but others faced the same circumstances, found a way to contend with these factors, and achieved success.

Limiting beliefs and self-defeating behaviors

Sadly, we tend to hold limiting beliefs and engage in self-defeating behaviors. We defend our self-destructive habits (such as drinking, smoking, and overeating) with indefensible logic. We continue to act on these habits to our physical and mental detriment.

Additionally, we ignore helpful feedback. We fail to keep learning and developing new skills. Furthermore, we engage in idle gossip, eat unhealthy foods, fail to exercise, spend more money than we make, fail to tell the truth, or don’t ask for what we want. Then we wonder why our lives and careers didn’t turn out the way we hoped.

Sadly, some even resign themselves to feeling that poor outcomes are the best they’re capable of achieving. Obviously, this couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s not about your capability; it’s about whether you’re willing to develop and attempt a different response.

You can achieve better outcomes

Some people take a different approach to the events of their lives. They intentionally change their responses to the events until they get the outcomes they want (E + R =O).

You can change your perspective and the way you communicate with others. Also, you can change your expectations. You can even change your behavior, which will likely have a positive impact on your work with other people. An essential part of taking responsibility for our future success is acknowledging that our responses matter and admitting that we can change those responses as needed.

In effect, two individuals experiencing the same event, but offering a different response, will each experience a different outcome. Therefore, if you want better outcomes, change your responses to the events you experience. Why would you stand by a response that produced a poor outcome?

Are you ready to take responsibility?

Unfortunately, most of us allow mindless habits to direct our actions. We’ve become stuck in conditioned responses to our family, colleagues, and even our clients and customers. Nevertheless, we can reverse this trend by taking responsibility for our thoughts, behaviors, and actions. Additionally, you can align these with your purpose, your values, and your goals.

I encourage you to carefully choose how you respond to personal and professional events if you want to achieve better outcomes. Remember, you can exercise a lot of control over your future with your responses. If you can improve your outcomes, you can enhance your opportunities to build a happier life and a more successful career.

Share This Article

Sign-up to receive The Career Generalist’s Blog

It’s delivered each week to your inbox.

Recent Posts

How can SEO copyediting help you attract more visitors to your website?

Contact Us Today

About the Author: David Cox

David Cox is a Co-owner of TPB Business Copyediting. He writes to encourage us to apply our multidisciplinary training and experiences to develop our current career role further.