Some political problems, like the impending fiscal cliff, cannot be solved until the very last moment, because the external pressure has to be so high that politicians can actually get forgiven for making the painful choice. If a Republican had acted 3 years ago and voted to increase taxes or a Democrat has voted to dramatically cut spending there would have been backlash from some of their supporters; they would have lost a lot of them and risked not getting reelected. But now, doom is so close that things have reversed – politicians face alienating their electorate by resisting tax increases or spending cuts. The notion of things falling apart in less than a month is a big motivator for creating the possibilities that become actions and solutions.
This tendency for action or different action to be taken as we get closer to the consequences is not isolated to politics because it seems to be a quality of most humans.
“The doctor told me that I needed to get into better shape.” This is usually interpreted by them as “I am going to die soon” and this is a compelling why.
“One of my friends / family had a heart attack and they are younger than me.” This too is interpreted as “I am going to die soon.”
Most drug addicts need to hit bottom before they stop using – death needs to be the next logical step in their addiction.
Many people who stop smoking do so only when they view the consequences (cancer, emphysema, etc…) as being inevitable if they continue to smoke.
Many students hold off studying until they view there to be no more time to waste.
Take a moment to think about your own behavior and that of those around you – how often are pragmatic actions tabled until they become crisis actions?
Be it your eighth cigarette or your 50000th, the threat of illness is always the reason why you should not smoke.
Being overweight or under exercised always increases your chance of dying early – this doesn’t become the reality the moment the doctor tells you to move more and eat better, or because someone you know has a heart attack.
Doing drugs always lowers your potential and does some damage to your body.
Consider the possibility that the “why” that seems to come to light as the consequences get closer is ALWAYS the why.