Don’t assume the quick answer is the right answer. Don’t assume it’s not.

A friend of mine shared this image on Facebook with directions to “find the one that is different.” I took a quick look at it and felt rather smug that I came up with the answer immediately: Dog #1 does not have a white spot on her nose. I was the first to post a response, too – can you say “super-smug”?

Until the other responses started pouring in.

And my favorite:

This really got me thinking: How many times do we, as otherwise intelligent people, get less-than-optimal results because we jump to conclusions, decide too quickly, or go with the first solution that presents itself?

I’m guessing the answer, for a lot of people, is “many, many times.”

Ouch.

This is a really efficient way to sabotage your results. It’s also very tempting; after all, a quick decision means you can actually cross something off your Too Much To Do list. Unfortunately, you may spend a whole bunch of extra time addressing unexpected down-sides of your hasty choice.

So today I invite you to take advantage of the pandemic-enforced isolation by reflecting on your habitual way of making decisions. Are those decisions thoughtful, strategic, intentional? If so, then some celebrational chocolate is obviously in order. But maybe they’re sometimes poorly thought out, superficial, or simply made too damn fast to yield good results. If that’s the case, then some consolation chocolate is obviously in order.

Either way, remember that the more consciously and intentionally you focus on what outcomes you want to create from your decisions, the more willing you’ll be to spend whatever time is needed to ensure they serve you well.

If you’re wondering how to get control of your day so you feel you have time to make well-considered decisions, check out the following quick-read resources: Your To Do List is Not the Boss of You and Zoom In: How to Focus on What’s Important and Let the Rest Go.

Both are drawn from my unfortunately broad experience with learning to focus rather than flail around. And since you’re helping to flatten the pandemic curve by staying home, now’s a good time to flatten your learning curve when it comes to boosting your productivity to the next level.

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2 Responses to Don’t assume the quick answer is the right answer. Don’t assume it’s not.

  1. Marion Patterson says:

    Wow! great admission on “super-smug” fallacy! Same can go for legislators and “leaders” making quick passaged bills to “Fix” something. Haste makes waste.

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