A-Z Popular Blog Behavior Search »

9 Examples of Natural Consequences

Natural consequences are the inherent effects of a behavior in the real world. This occurs where the cause and effect results of behavior aren't interrupted by an outside power such as a society or a parent. Natural consequences can be positive such as a greater sense of wellness that is the consequence of eating well. They can also be negative such as a broken leg from reckless behavior on a bicycle. The following are illustrative examples of natural consequences.
A restaurant that fails because its food didn't taste very good.
A restaurant that thrives because it bounces back from initial failures to adapt food and service towards greatness.
Breaking a toy by throwing it down some stairs.
Failing a test because you didn't study.
Getting fired for mediocre performance.
Getting into a car accident because you were distracted while driving.
Getting into a top university because you have superior study habits and have expended massive effort.
Getting promotions, big bonuses and respect for being more productive and committed than most of your coworkers.
Losing a friend because you were often inconsiderate towards them.

Behavioral Learning

Natural consequences act as a type of positive or negative reinforcement that represent a foundational type of behavioral learning.

Lack of Consequences

Where the effects of your actions are always tempered by an outside force your behavior may become quite negative, destructive and detached from reality. For example, if a government stepped in to clear debts and fund every business that fails -- businesses would have no incentive to produce quality products or to maximize customer satisfaction. If this were done at scale, production of value by the economy would rapidly decline towards zero.

Natural Consequences and Parenting

Natural consequences can be used as a parenting approach. Children must be protected from natural consequences such as getting injured by doing something dangerous. However, parents may allow certain natural consequences to filter through in order to help their children to mature and align their behavior to real world conditions where parents don't fix everything. For example, a parent who doesn't immediately replace a toy when it is broken through misuse.
Overview: Natural Consequences
The inherent effects of a behavior in the real world.
Related Concepts


This is the complete list of articles we have written about behavior.
Behavior Learning
Defense Mechanisms
Difficult Behaviors
Group Behavior
Group Dynamics
Natural Consequences
Passive Aggressive
Social Conformity
Social Contagion
Tetris Effect
Tit For Tat
More ...
Try our search:

If you enjoyed this page, please consider bookmarking Simplicable.


A list of human behaviors.


A list of character traits and character archetypes.

Behavior Learning

An overview of behavior learning with examples.

Group Behavior

A list of common group behaviors.

Hawthorne Effect

An overview of the Hawthorne effect with examples.

Characteristics Of Human Behavior

A list of the characteristics of human behavior.

Communication Behaviors

A list of common communication behaviors.


An overview of Freud's id with examples.

Social Conformity

An overview of social conformity with examples.


The definition of self-control with examples.


A list of common actions.

Selling Out

An overview of selling out with examples.

Negative Attitudes

A a-z list of negative attitudes.


An overview of ego with examples.

Social Development

An overview of social development with examples.

Personal Leadership

An overview of personal leadership with examples.


An overview of the super-ego with examples.

Theory Of Mind

An overview of theory of mind and its levels and types.
The most popular articles on Simplicable in the past day.

New Articles

Recent posts or updates on Simplicable.
Site Map