How many of us make half-brained decisions?
If you’re someone who makes decisions purely from your head and ignores your emotions or how your body feels as you’re considering your options, you’re making a decision with the left side of your brain and ignoring the right.
If you’re someone who doesn’t take time to gather information or think through your options and instead makes decisions based on how you feel, you’re using the right side of your brain and ignoring left.
People who only use the left side of their brain to make decisions tend to go round and round in their heads trying to figure out which is the best choice. It can be exhausting. And if they ignore how they’re feeling about their options, chances are they’ll end up making a decision that doesn’t really work well for them.
Those who only use the right side of their brain and skip collecting the information they need and skip spending time thinking logically through their options can end up making decisions they later regret after getting more information.
In both these cases, people are making half-brained decisions.
We’ve been give 2 sides to our brain for a reason, and each side has an important role in our decision-making process.
The left brain’s role is to collect the information you need to make a good decision. Then it can logically think about your options.
Your right brain synthesizes the information your left brain collected and communicates it to you through your emotions and feelings in your body.
Both sides are important.
An excellent way to make decisions is to:
- Collect the information you need to be informed on what you’re deciding.
- Think through the information you’ve collected logically and see what you’re left brain has to say about it.
- Then connect with how your body feels and what emotions you’re experiencing as you think through each option.
- The option that feels the best in your body and emotions after doing the steps above will be the best choice you can make with the information you currently have.
- If none of the options feel right in your body and emotions, you may need more information or more options. Talking through what doesn’t seem right with someone can help clarify things too.
Now, the emotional part can be tricky. And this is why many people are afraid to wade into the emotional territory when making decisions. When we’re in extreme emotions, we don’t make good decisions. Think about the last decision you made when you were really angry at someone you love. I bet you regretted it.
Ideally, when we need to make a decision, we work toward a more neutral place with our emotions before seriously considering our options. And if strong emotions come up, we examine what’s behind those emotions. They’re trying to tell us something. Taking the time to process them before actually making the decision is important so that those strong emotions don’t hijack our decision-making process.
A word about fear. A good decision can still be a scary one. Don’t let fear stop you. It’s normal to feel some fear when we’re trying something new.
Even if you tend to be more left-brained or right-brained, using your whole brain you will make better decisions.