Effort is the total amount of work required to get from the current state to the desired state (goal).

Newtons First Law

Problems Require Effort to Solve

A problem cannot be solved without effort. Isaac Newton's first Law of Motion states that a body remains the same unless acted upon - that is, it stays still, or moves in a straight line at the same speed, unless a force acts on it. Effort is the same as work which in physics equals a force applied to an object to move it the distance required. Work is energy and is measured in joules, calories, or ergs.


For the sake of simplicity a lifeform's effort to solve a problem in this article equals a change in state which requires effort (energy). So basically in regards to a lifeform's state, it will stay the same until the lifeform applies effort or doesn't make the effort to avoid a threat. Physical effort is required to make a change.



Thinking is not Doing

Let's say a lifeform has a problem with hunger and wants to feed itself. Thinking about where the food is and how to prepare it is not actually getting the food and preparing it, is it? The physical effort involved ensures the lifeform is fed, the thinking is just the planning.


Climbing Effort

Climbing Effort


The types of effort required include;

  • Thinking of a desired goal - in the mind of the lifeform and not impacting the environment;
  • Thinking and recording a plan to get there - part thinking and part action, but that action does not impact on the environment directly to solve the problem;
  • Performing all the little actions in the plan - it's the actions which actually changes things. How can thinking fill a stomach? This is not fantasy land where things magically happen. Physical action must take place as we are bound by the laws of nature - described by physics. No doubt this may seem obvious to most when I describe it this way, but how many lifeforms accomplish tasks by only just thinking about it?

a) Thinking is a chemical thought process which impacts the mind of the lifeform, not its environment;

b) Thinking of a new solution to a problem doesn't test and prove the problem; and

c) To share a problem with other lifeforms involves communication which is a physical action.


How many lifeforms can you think of that have solved a problem without physically actioning it. Think carefully. They will have done at least one of the following actions which are all not purely-thinking-about-it;

Sand DrawingSpeechSlavesDigging


The first two are influence actions, the next two are direct actions.

Complaining is not Constructive Effort

Complaining about a problem is action, but it does not involve the complainer directly solving their problem. Complaining so loudly that others solve the problem is getting the problem solved, but the lifeform hasn't learned the skill to solve the problem nor has it gained any experience. The other lifeforms who have solved the problem on its behalf have gained experience and will find it easier next time, while the complainer has not improved. What happens to the complainer when there is no one around to help them? Fear, helplessness and anxiety will be their emotions, not confidence and self-esteem. Anything essential like food preparation will leave the complainer starving, or worse dead. Young children are very dependant on their parents. Great parents pass on their skills so that the child can look after itself without their help.


Lifeforms are instinctualy drawn to those who can solve problems and reach goals that they want. Notice how most humans are drawn to the rich and famous (the 'successful')? Lifeforms instinctualy shy away from those who are a burden or are weak, as they weaken those around them. This is part of their survival instinct. Humans have learned to share and assist others, but our basic instinct is to shy away from those draw more energy than an individual is prepared to share. We choose what we do, some do more for others, and others do less.


In short - don't just think, DO!