C And S Thinking Tool - Consequences


C & S Tool Description:

C&S Stands for consequences & sequel. We have the tendency to make decisions without thinking much about the consequences of the action as it is difficult to forsee things and future is vague. It causes a lot of difficulties in our personal and professional life. This tool will help us to consider the consequences before taking any big decision.

When we are emotional, our thinking shuts down and our reaction happens without considering the consequences of our action. When this tool is practiced, it will help you to intercept your reaction when anger rises.

We often have to act or take decison with low levels of accuracy when dealing with future. We cannot delay our action till we get certain details as it may never be available in the future. All thinking about future is speculation. But the advantage of listing down consequences give more clarity and confidence while performing the action.

How To Use C&S Tool

Deliberate attempt should be made to find out the consequences based on four time scale.

  1. List down the consequences of action which are immediate up to 1 year;
  2. Find the consequences of action/decision for short-term from 1 to 5 years
  3. Find medium-term consequences from 5 to 20 years; long-term over 20 years. These time frames are arbitrary and can be varied based on the nature of the action.
  4. Find long-term consequences over 20 years.
  5. Analyze the certainity or probability of the consequences and give score.
  6. After analyzing certainity and benefits/risks for all four consequences list, take action or decision.

Tips for using C&S tool:

  1. Not all decision need to have four terms. Based on the decision made, it can be shortened. For example, when you consider dispute with friend, immediate term would be that moment, short term would be that day, medium term would be 1 month and long term would be 1 year.
  2. Fix the duration for immediate term, short term, medium term and long term on the case to case basis based on the importance of action or decision.
  3. Actions which may have negative consequences in short term may give long term positver consequences.

When To Apply C&S Tool:

  1. Do C&S before taking important action: What are the risks and dangers?
  2. For Planning: Will your idea work out?
  3. Do C&S before taking the decision or choosing from available options.
  4. To analyze situation which affects survival or lifestyle

C&S Tool Usage Example:

Topic: Prices of necessary commodities such as food increases ten times in 1 month because of famine.

Immediate Term ( 1 Week) :

  1. Demand for Food Items will go up which results in high price increase.
  2. People will rush to super markets to buy and stock the food items.
  3. Unavailablity of food in restaurants and shops.

Short Term ( 3 Months) :

  1. The prices will continue to go up till all the stock is sold in shops.
  2. There will be riots in street as it is going to be very difficult to get food.
  3. All shops and restaurants will be closed.
  4. People will loot available food grains from restaurants even when they are closed.
  5. No Food items will be available in super market.

Medium Term ( 1 Year) :

  1. The next sowing season will improve the situation.
  2. People attitude towards necessary goods and luxury good change. People Spend only on things which are very necessary.
  3. Savings will go up in banks and everyone would have personal stock of food items at home.

Long Term ( 5 years):

  1. People will grow their own food.
  2. Land prices will go up as people would like to have space for growing vegetables.
  3. People start to relocate to places where farming is feasible.


If the probability of famine is high, then it would be better to stock food items which have large shelf life. From the C&S, you also figured out that it may take minimum of 1 year to come out of the famine. Also, for long term you can plan to educate yourself on farming and relocate your residence close to the water source.

Activities for Practice:

  1. What are the consequences when you fail in your exam
  2. Children above 16 are asked to work for 10 hours.
  3. When you school examinations are abolished?
  4. List out the consequences for not getting job in your favourite subject or domain.
  5. Vaccine is invented which will increase average life of humans to 100 years.
  6. New device informs you whenever someone is telling a lie.
  7. Oil reserves drain and it will serve only for the current year demand.
  8. When high denomination currency notes are declared unworthy
  9. When you are fired from your job within one year of your appointment.
  10. What are the consequence of employing nuclear energy for electricity generation
  11. When banks are closed for one month.
  12. Marriage becomes a 5-year contract instead of life term commitment.

References & Further Reading

1. Book - Teach Your Child How to Think by Edward De Bono

2. Book - De Bono’s Thinking Course

About Prabakaran Thirumalai 767 Articles
Blogger on topics including Life Skills such as Learning, Thinking, Emotional Intelligence, Motivation, and Social Skills.