Many people assume that if they try heroin once they will end up a junkie in 10 days. Most of that has to do with the horror stories you hear from various media. You’ll never see some guy on the news telling you about the single time he tried heroin and lived normally ever after because it’s not very exciting. People want to hear about the person with 1000 needle marks on their forearm, lost everything, sold his dog for $2, stole his grandmother’s prized porcelain doll collection and now lives on the street getting laughed at by the same dog he sold.
We often picture life turning out in the way we’re used to fearing or hearing about. Quitting your job without having another one lined up conjures up images of homelessness and sadness rather than the possibility of a better job or just a better life in general. Again, you always hear about the people who lost their job and ended up living in their car wondering if they’ll have to give oral sex in exchange for a cheeseburger. Those stories are meant to entertain and make you feel better about yourself more than they are to properly inform you. Did you guys hear about what that guy did for a cheeseburger? Don’t quit your job, man.
Occasionally you do know the person who lost their job and landed somewhere better but it’s more common to amount this to a fluke. Many would call it, “lucky,” meaning you were more likely to end up in a worse position but the gods decided to side with you because it was a slow day in the Middle East. Who makes these odds? Outside of historical data and science, people often calculate odds using what they’re used to seeing and hearing. A bias is also often included to accommodate people’s feelings.
At my last job, over the years there were consistently people who were fired or basically forced to quit on the spot. Most of my colleagues appeared sympathetic but for the most part took advantage of someone’s perceived moment of shame and downturn to rejoice in their own perceived superiority. The only time I was rejoicing someone’s departure was when I disliked them but even then I was jealous. Now he has a chance, I thought. My other thought was that at least they didn’t have to come here anymore.
As far as I know none of those people ended up homeless or needed to do desperate actions for that cheeseburger. Some went on to better jobs even. When imagination or faith in the unknown is a requirement to move on, the majority play will be to do nothing. If the best laid plans often go awry then why wouldn’t the same occur just as often to the worst unplanned ones?