Choices and Consequences

Published: November 3, 2020

Most of the choices we exercise throughout the day are inconsequential. Sometimes, there are days or decisions that have the power to pivot lives. Whether to have Wheaties or Cheerios for breakfast doesn’t alter the universe. Voting does.

Big decisions at critical times are like jumping into a chasm. You don’t always know the outcome when you take the leap. Fear and excitement happen simultaneously. However it turns out, the next moment will be measurably different from the previous one. Like most risks, there’s a period of anticipation and ambivalence. It holds you back until you’re ready to sacrifice the odds of an unfavorable outcome for the chance of the future state you desire.

Not voting is a coward’s path. The choice not to participate usually comes with an intellectualized rationalization using primitive psychological defense mechanisms. It’s a common response to fear. You just have to convince yourself that no decision is the best decision. While finesse and timing might make the case for deferring a choice, you eventually have to make it or it is made for you.

Take the leap. Vote.

Photo of Steve Ritter, the co-founder of The Center for Team Excellence

Steve Ritter

Steve Ritter is an internationally recognized expert on team dynamics whose clients include Fortune 500 companies, professional sports teams, and many educational organizations. He is on the faculty of the Center for Professional Excellence at Elmhurst College where he earned the President's Award for Excellence in Teaching. Steve is the former Senior Vice President, Director of Human Resources at Leaders Bank, named the #1 Best Place to Work in Illinois in 2006 and winner of the American Psychological Association's Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award in 2010. Steve provides ongoing workplace culture consultation to many thriving companies including Kraft Foods, Advocate Health Care, Kellogg's, the Chicago White Sox, AthletiCo, and Northwestern Mutual Financial Network.