The GIGO Principle: How Input Determines Output in Different Aspects of Life

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Learn how input determines output in different aspects of life and how you can use this principle to your advantage

GIGO is a famous acronym in the field of computer programming and mathematics. “Garbage in, garbage out” is the belief that the quality of input determines the quality of output. This is to demonstrate that if you put in faulty information, you are definitely going to get inaccurate results. This principle applies to different aspects of your life.


Your Mind

Your eyes and your ears are the two primary ways your mind receives information. The movies you watch, the books you read, and the music and podcasts you listen to have a tremendous impact on shaping your mind. This is why you must be mindful of the content you consume every day. Motivational contents apply this principle. Words of encouragement will affect the way you perform a given task. Treat your mind as the sponge that it is.


Your Body and Mood

The next most important aspect of your life that perfectly aligns with the GIGO principle is your body. As the saying goes, you are what you eat. If you frequently eat unhealthy food, you will have an unhealthy body. The type of food you eat is also crucial to the state of your gut health. According to an article by Harvard Business Review, ninety percent of serotonin receptors –mood regulators that influence our biological and neurological processes, such as aggression, anxiety, cognition, mood, and sleep –are located in the gut. This is the reason you feel good after eating your favorite snack. Although it also has to do with the bursts of dopamine you get, it is also highly indicative of how food affects your mood.


Your Soul

Your soul is the harmonious intersection of your body and mind. What affects your body and mind will undoubtedly affect your soul. If your mind is in a negative place, your soul will suffer. Moreover, if your soul is at peace, your body and mind will benefit greatly. You need to invest time tapping into your soul and processing what is happening. Depression, anxiety, and such mental illnesses are symptoms of a soul with unmet or muted needs. Ask yourself, is my soul at peace? If it’s not, your mind, body, and, consequently, your life will be directly affected.


You can start applying the principle of GIGO to your life by looking at the negative things in your life and tracing them back to their origins. Usually, the "garbage out" is easy to identify. It is the stuff that’s bothering your life; it’s the things that are hurting you both mentally and physically. The "garbage in" needs a little more work to identify. Once you have figured this out, the next step is taking practical and decisive actions. Be discerning with what you let into your life. Garbage in, garbage out. Good in, Good out.

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