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Horses and Mirrors and Wakes and Boats


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What does it mean to put the cart before the horse?

Normally horses pull carts.

Horses have a lot of strength.

Which is why horsepower is a unit of power.

Power is energy per time.

A cart, on the other hand, can only hold stuff.

It can't do anything.

So putting the cart before the horse means to get things backwards.

Or to misunderstand which part is doing the work.

And which part is being effected by the work.

Another similar metaphor from self help is "the wake doesn't drive the boat."

Boats move under their own power.

The wake is behind the boat.

A passive effect.

This is normally used to talk about how our past doesn't drive our future.

Our past is an effect of our past actions.

Another similar metaphor is driving by looking in the rear view mirror.

Instead of looking ahead, we sometimes look behind.

Of course, if you're actually driving, and this isn't a metaphor, you'll crash.

Crashing comes when not looking where you are going.

All these metaphors are based on misunderstanding cause and effect.

This is pretty common for humans.

We see cause effect everywhere when it doesn't exist.

Which means we mostly misunderstand pretty much everything.

The most complicated interactions are emotional.

Especially when other people do and say things, and we don't know why.

We wonder what they want.

We wonder why they did or didn't do what they did.

If you aren't careful, we can start to project.

We might imagine something bad that happened to us before.

And since we FEAR those things happening again, we'll tend to see them when they don't exist.

Which can actually CREATE those things.

This is hard to see from inside your brain.

Human emotional interactions are very complicated.

Very easy to misunderstand.

Even couples who have been together for a long time have a hard time communicating.

However, all humans are driven by our deep instincts.

Even if we don't want to acknowledge them.

But if you take the time to understand what these instincts are, understanding complex human behavior is much easier.

Turns out things are much simpler that we imagine.

Because most of the time we are projecting.

Which means most of the time we are reading MUCH MORE into a situation that is actually happening.

Take a step back and see what makes people tick.

You'll be able to predict actions.

You'll be able to read emotions.

You'll be able to create the relationships you want.

And avoid the ones you don't.

Learn How:


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