Broken window theory

January 1, 2020 • ☕️ 2 min read

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What is it?

So the theory, in plain simple words is: If a person sees a broken window isn’t getting fixed immediately, he gets the idea that maybe its alright to break the other windows also and maybe even put the whole thing ablaze.

It was first coined by criminologists James Wilson and George Kelling. (Wiki)

If speaking strictly from a criminologist’s perspective, the formal definition states that visible signs of minor anti-social behavior if left unchecked usually tends to encourage more and severe anti-social behaviors.

Why does it matter?

But what is it of any importance to us, right?
Wrong.

It may be only me, but I try to find patterns wherever possible.
And the pattern which I’ve found here is that the same theory can be used to explain how one gains or loose confidence.

You see a broken window somewhere and try to break another, there you go. You’ve lowered the confidence of someone by one window.

You see someone trying to break a window in your confidence, you fix it immediately or let your guard down. The trajectory of your confidence is going to go up or down accordingly.

How can it affect your life?

The first window is usually not in our control. The stone can come from any direction.
But the second window, uhmmmm.
The second is where you have to decide. What to and whether to do or not.

Ever saw a completely confidence void guy or girl?
Do you just think he/she landed on the no-confidence-land like magic? Out of nowhere?
Most probably he/she had a little too many of her windows broken and not getting them fixed.

You do the wrong thing once, it becomes easier to do it again.

It all boils down to little things. Little, tiny biases we make in our minds. That’s where the magic happens.
We build ourselves everyday and some of us slither ourselves away a little everyday.

It’s not just a window. Be that mean Aunt or Uncle on the street, scare away the notorious brats and fix your god dammed windows.


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“Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray." - Rumi