The 90-10 Principle and Me

Sometime back I came across this principle called as the “90-10 principle” by Stephen Covey.

It states that “10% of life is made up of what happens to you. 90% of life is decided by how you react”

Is it as simple as it sounds?

Well I decided to understand this by starting to implement in my daily life. And believe me it worked wonders.

Every time there was a situation where the “old” me would react in a strong manner, I said to myself “90% is dependent on my reaction” and then my reaction automatically changed. Things went to happen much more positive after that.

So why are we becoming so aggressive in reacting these days. May be, because of stress, work pressures, trying to catch up with the fast paced life. But hey! We need to tackle these.

A simple example: A vehicle in front of me is not moving even though the signal has turned green. I get irritated and start to blow the horn. What happens actually – I am restless, I am more stressed. Because I immediately decided to react in that way….Can I turn this reaction around. Can I think that the reason the person in front of me is not moving could be because he has turned off the engine and needs to start it? Or could be that an old man is driving the car and he needs more time (reflex) to get started. These thoughts will only come to mind if you decide to follow this principle

Believe me this principle is just wonderful. You will understand it if you start implementing it in your daily life.

And how do you implement it? Well it’s simple –

Every time you are about to react strongly (losing your patience), think in mind “90% is dependent on my reaction” (It will take you 5 seconds to say this in mind, and the effect might put you in a winning situation)


2 thoughts on “The 90-10 Principle and Me

  1. Very true. Talking to inner self and filtering reactions helps reduce the stress. A very seasoned military officer told me once: “90% of the environment is non-negotiable”. Better off are those who realize it.

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