There is process and there are results.
The process is what gets us from one moment to the other.
The result is what we can see once something happened.
It pays to distinguish between both.
From a process point of view, we always do what we want.
Every action involves a choice, the one to do or not to do. We can choose the course of our action. We can choose our reaction to events. The choice we make is based on our evaluation of the situation, that is the options we can see. Once a choice is made it is what we want.
From a result point of view, we may not have done what we wanted and we may not like where we ended up.
The person who decided to blame me for my actions earlier on? She could have asked, she could have shared the rules, she could have explained what had happened from her perspective, etc.
Her choice impacted my perception of the atmosphere in her shop. I can use this experience and I can leave it aside. And I can look at my own action and consider how it triggered her blame.
Our ability to see our choices shapes our autonomy. Taking the time to consider what we do is keeping our freedom.
Viktor Frankl described it as “the last of the human freedoms” and defined it as our ability “to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way (in how he approaches his circumstances).”
We cannot change results. We can only choose what we do.
Knowing that it is what we want, helps to see how we contribute to getting what we want. It may be different from what we thought.