Making tough decisions under pressure

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Stress

Let’s face it, we’ve all made bad decisions!

I think back to all the crazy, life-changing decisions I’ve made from my teens to now and marvel at how well my life has turned out as a result.

Then I ponder business decisions … there’s a lot we have to make right?

When you go beyond a Founder and start to build your team, it’s not just about you anymore.  There’s a team, there’s customers and suppliers, there’s finances to worry about, equipment, software, tools, materials, etc, and the list goes on. 

That’s a lot of responsibility, stress and pressure …

Every day, you are making multiple decisions.  Right now, you’re probably making more decisions than normal and making them faster.

So, how do you try to ensure that in the face of stress, pressure and unforeseen circumstances, you make good decisions? 

Here’s a couple of ways:

  • Framing – ask yourself:
    • What are my choices?
    • What are the possible outcomes—short and long term?
    • How will this decision affect those around me (personally and professionally)?
  • Ponder – in most instances, you will have a feel for what you think you should do, however it’s always wise to:
    • Take a break from it and do something else (walk, run), then relook at the issue with fresh eyes
    • Sleep on it .. getting some rest can bring a fresh perspective and clarity
  • Sense check your decisions – once you find your answer, ask yourself:
    • Does it feel “right” more than just feel “good”
    • Is this good for others and me?
    • Do the rewards outweigh the risks?
    • Is this the best decision over the long term?
    •  
  • Reflect & Evaluate – after the decision was made and actioned:
    • What it the right decision?
    • Did I achieve what I needed to?

And lastly, remember to stop, breathe and to practice self-care. 

Why? 

If you can’t look after yourself, then you’re going to struggle to make the best decisions to look after others.

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