What does the butterfly effect mean in psychology?

What does the butterfly effect mean in psychology?
"The beating of a butterfly's wings can cause a hurricane in another part of the world"

This phrase summarizes this curious theory which states that every little act we do has enormous consequences in the world and in the people around us. We can not calculate the effect that our decisions or our words will produce and thinking about it can generate a sensation of vertigo. However, this theory can be useful to be more careful with what we do or say.

This effect has been studied from different prisms and sciences such as physics or philosophical theory. Do you want to know what the butterfly effect in psychology means? Then do not hesitate to continue reading the following article on Transkerja.com.

Explanation of the butterfly effect according to psychology

This curious phenomenon known as the butterfly effect was developed mainly by a meteorologist (Edward Norton) to explain variations of climate that could not be conceived by themselves and that could be explained as the sum of small progressive changes, with the passage of time , the butterfly effect was introduced in different theoretical fields as in physics, philosophy and, of course, in psychology.

The theory of the butterfly effect explains that a small change, a minimal action, can lead to unimaginable consequences. The butterfly effect affirms that there is a connection, an invisible thread in the universe that unites all our decisions and converts them into repercussions. This theory is closely linked to the concept of domino effect or chain effect.

What is butterfly effect according to psychology

In psychology, we apply this theory to mentalize that our actions have an impact beyond us. We could say that this effect can motivate us to make small changes aimed at achieving the lifestyle we so desire and achieve a complete psychological well-being . This effect can help us understand the functioning of everything that surrounds us and the importance of taking care of every detail of our life , every small decision we make can lead to the change we have been waiting for so long.

Let's take an example: it may be that the fact of deciding to take the bus instead of the train makes us know that person who, in the future, is our partner. It may also be that the comment we have made to our friend about the clothes she is wearing today, causes her enormous discomfort and generates an important feeling of sadness . Be that as it may, we must take into account the influence of our actions and decisions on the lives of others and on our own.

The butterfly effect and the theory of chaos

Once we know what the butterfly effect is in psychology , it is important to define the famous theory of chaos. The butterfly effect is part of a broader idea called chaos theory, this theory supposed a revolution in the way of understanding the universe and its functioning. It has its origin in physics and mathematics and supports the following:
  • There are certain systems (for example, planet earth) that are very sensitive to small changes or variations, these changes can completely change the nature of these systems. In other words, small initial variations can generate huge changes over time.
  • Chaos theory also aims to explain the universe , why is it so difficult for us to understand its operation? If we assume that the universe is governed by chaos, we can understand that its behavior is unpredictable and can vary with minimal acts, such as our own decisions.

Once we have understood this idea, we can apply it in our day to day. We must bear in mind that we can not predict or control absolutely everything that surrounds us and, for that reason, we have to focus on the here and now, bearing in mind that we are not alone and that we live surrounded by people who can be seen affected by our actions.

Butterfly effect: examples and phrases

As we have been commenting throughout the article, the butterfly effect can be summarized in the concept of

" The fluttering of a butterfly's wings can cause a hurricane on the other side of the world "

Phrases about the butterfly effect

From this premise we can put many examples and phrases of this effect in our day to day:
  • Deciding to go to an event can make us meet an old friend, this meeting can cause your friendship relationship to revive.
  • Making a comment that we do not give importance to about a person's appearance can make them feel bad and change that aspect.
  • Throwing a cigarette butt on the ground and ignoring it can cause an uncontrollable fire.
  • Deciding to change the route and take the subway can make us meet a person who, over time, can become someone very special in our lives.
All these examples can make us see the importance of small actions. After all, these are what make up our reality. After a great decision or change in our life, there is always a set of small details that have facilitated that situation.

The butterfly effect: film
The butterfly effect has become so important and influential in our society that an interesting film was released in 2004. This film is entitled " the butterfly effect " and its main argument is based on a young man who, while trying to recover the memories of his childhood, manages to travel back in time and discovers the power that small changes and decisions of the past have in your present. The film contains an important message and a curious psychological reflection on what the butterfly effect is.

Now that you know what the butterfly effect is and the importance it has in our day to day life, what can you do to improve your life from small decisions? Reflect on it and apply this curious effect in your day to day.