Butterfly Effect

Hard work sometimes feels like spinning your wheels in mud.  Lots of energy but nothing changes.  So when small changes are suggested, most people ignore the suggestion.  How can one small change make a difference when a whole bunch of work produces so little?

I am a math geek.  I love equations and how things work.  Fractals are an art form to me. Try a search for Fractal Images you will see what I think is beautiful.  In my philosophy class, I chose to study the impact of the Butterfly Effect.  The professor scoffed at my ability to prove it.  I replied, “I am not going to, I am going to show that the Butterfly Effect changed the way scientist look at data.”  Before the Butterfly effect became a theory, scientists accepted the idea that most results came in a bell curve.  They believed that the extreme data held little value so focused on the majority of the results.  The Butterfly Effect came into being with computers.  (Only a computer will meticulously calculate so many equations accurately.) Most people do not realize that several sets of scientist discovered similar theories about the same time.  Part of the reason there is so much debate is deciding who gets the credit.  The basis of the idea I read about one account where a scientist was running a weather program.  The computer printed out results to the third decimal but the internal information was to the sixth decimal.  The computer quit, I don’t remember the circumstances, so rather than starting completely over, he entered the printed calculations.  He figured the miniscule difference of less than 1/1000 would make no difference.  Not only was he wrong, but he was wildly and extremely wrong.  This perked his attention.  Now scientist are redoing hundreds of experiments and repeatedly discovering that extreme difference and influence on the stuff they ignored for years.

Butterfly Effect….http://www.wisegeek.org/what-is-the-butterfly-effect.htm

So how does this apply to PTSD?  Too often when a counselor suggests a slight change, their counsel is blown off and ignored with the idea of “PTSD is big, how can a small change make a difference?”  This is where we can be wildly wrong.  I tried many of the small suggestions that my counselor made.  My theory was if I am going through hell anyway what difference would trying make.  Somethings didn’t work.  Others did with amazing results.  I shared a video on my other blog that has to do with bullies but this type of small change is what I mean by small changes can make a big difference.


Before counseling, I worked out and wrote an essay on making 7 simple changes.  I found that consistently working on simple changes I am altering my thinking and my living.  More to come on this subject.

2 thoughts on “Butterfly Effect

  1. Pingback: The other 1% | PTSD - Accepting, Coping, Thriving

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