Fly or Flee: How to Improve Decision Making in Key Moments

Up until I had kids, I was focused and I was relatively speaking relaxed, meaning it took a lot to get me uptight and/or frustrated. Just before I had kids, as I entered the workforce, at the University of Wisconsin and the University of Arizona, I began to become more wound up. After I had kids, as happens with many of us parents, we unknowingly choose to be more uptight.

I think I became used to being stressed, even though I was loving most of what I was doing.

Over the past 20 years, I’ve had my times where I’ve allowed stress to enter my psyche. This stress had a direct impact on my ability to make decisions. For me, these decisions in key moments were not related to my professional work, at least not directly. They were however connected to my own well-being.

Over the past several years, I have made great strides in this area. Things which I previously allowed to create a negative ignition of emotion, don’t even register anymore. I’m aware of this and I’m aware of how I have evolved…

I have become aware of my awareness.

So how did I do it? To put that down all in one blog would not be authentic… too much information and too many stories to tell. You can find all of it in my next book, “A Cure for Boredom” which I’m currently writing. Meanwhile, here are some highlighted strategies and approaches.

How to go from fleeing difficult moments to flying through and above them

BREATHE

Stress impacts our ability to identify the essence of any conversation, much less potential solutions. Breathing has helped me profoundly. It’s relatively simple. The biggest barrier is remembering to breathe, as in deeply. We all continue to breath during stressful moments, but the nature of our breathing changes from normal to shallow. Keep in mind that normal breathing is not enough to impact our stress levels and decision making abilities. Deep breathing in through your nose and out your mouth is ideal. Try in for 2 seconds and out for 4 seconds and work your way up to 3 and 6, then 4 and 8. There are many approaches to breathing. Here’s another I wrote about in 2017.

Breathing and Emotional Response

If you’re interested in research on breathing and the impact on cognition, here is a research article you’ll enjoy.

SPEAK

I was taught long ago by a teacher and mentor of mine, Fritz Kaenzig, that I would be my longest surviving mentor. Thus, I take it upon myself to cheer myself up, empower myself, and challenge myself. I do this with both spoken words and unspoken words. Essentially, I use mantras and I speak them outloud. I do this with different inflections. I also think these empowering thoughts. Currently, my mantra is:

  • I am Gratitude
  • I am Love
  • I am Champion

TAKE ACTION WITH CALM

I’ve always been a person to take action. No problem with that! Over time I have improved greatly in my ability to continue to take action, but not with the sense of desperation or frustration. I think of words like float, flow, and flying. Instead of saying I have a lot to do today, I think to myself, and speak to myself phrases such as “I’m flying high all day today”.

Some good news is that because many people use bluetooth technology as they have conversations, it looks like they are speaking to themselves, so I fit right in. Of course, I don’t care if I fit in… lol!!!

Here is how I take action with calm.

Observe and Identify

I take the time to physically look around, and I see what I see, and I also sense the energy around me. I go where the good energy is. I also create my own good energy, and the synergy has been amazing. When I say amazing, I mean on a daily and weekly basis. Meeting the right people at the right time. This is how energy works.

Existing opportunity

I pay attention to my ongoing projects, and I also remain open to how ongoing projects can connect to other ongoing endeavors, and/or new opportunities.

New opportunity

I love living in the unknown. That is to say I energize myself by keeping a good portion of each day as an unplanned moment. This can happen within a plan, within a structure, and allows me to be even more productive. I do this in many ways, including changing the physical environment where I work. Compare this to being in the same workplace every day, every week, for years, and this is just one of many variables any of us can change as we go about our life.

New opportunities come up all the time. The question is, are you aware of them. Another question is, do you take the time to observe them and identify which ones are worthy of you. Do you know how to read the energy around you?

Time to fly…

Enrique

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