Actions vs. the outcome

Last night I came across a photo of myself from my junior year of college.
I looked at my 20 year old self and shook my head- the girl in the photo had no idea that in 2 years she’d be pregnant, moving back home as a single mom and being diagnosed as a T1 diabetic.
I think back to the decisions I made that got me to that positive pregnancy test and most of them were bad decisions.
The facts, red flags, evidence- nothing supports the decisions I made.
And I would never advise her to ignore the red flags and make the decisions I did.
You see, I got lucky.
Bad decisions- one amazing outcome.
And that outcome is now in 7th grade.
It’s so tempting to use a lucky outcome to justify a past bad decision and future ones.
And in the workplace and sports- it is often the outcome not the decision that is praised or criticized.
And that is a crucial mistake.
Good decisions can lead to bad outcomes.
Bad decisions can lead to good outcomes.
When evaluating decisions we have to look only at what information we had at the moment and the actions taken based on that information.
It means praising an employee or athlete on their decision, even if the outcome was bad.
And holding them accountable for a bad decision even if the outcome was good.
Creating a culture where getting lucky is rewarded more than good decision making, means forgetting the key fact that eventually the house always wins.
Luck runs out.
I got lucky by getting an amazing daughter out of a series of bad decisions.
And I chose to take accountability and make better decisions. Because at the end of the day, I knew that feeling good about my decisions matter more than the consequences good or bad of the outcome.

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About Becky

Becky Schmooke (pronounced “Smoke”) is a Mindful Leadership Consultant and Speaker, focused on providing action based mindfulness and leadership training to organizations and businesses who are ready to do things differently.

Becky’s Mindful Kitchen, is located outside of Iowa City, and provides truly unique team building and leadership retreats,  strategic planning workshops, private parties and classes and weekly summer camps for kids. The commercial teaching kitchen, treehouse, archery range, bush craft skills, first aid training, wood fired pizza oven, chickens, baby goats and timber adventure playground provides endless opportunities for hands on activities.


As a mom to three girls, 60 chickens, 4 goats, 2 dogs and a fire fighter’s wife- life is never boring and provides Becky with endless stories which she uses to illustrate her approach to mindfulness in daily posts on social media.  

In all that she does, Becky has one goal, to build confidence in others to take action to live their best life, not just pass time.  

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