I heard this phrase from Leila Hormozi and it was such a wonderful reminder about how we are wired as humans. She said when emotions go up, logic goes down. SO TRUE!
We can’t hide from it…we operate from emotion.
We think, we feel, we have beliefs, we have goals, we have past experiences, we have influences and all of it comes together to form our decision making.
Emotions are what separates us from the animals
Emotions are what make us human.
But they can also lead you astray to make really bad decisions that can impact you the rest of your life. All because a decision was made in the heat of the moment.
When emotions go up, logic goes down.
Think about these scenarios…
- Logically someone knows they need a calorie deficit but emotional eating throws them off track each night.
- Logically someone knows they need to save money but emotionally going out for drinks on friday night sounds like more fun.
- Logically someone knows they need to look at their numbers to grow their business but emotionally they focus on low level tasks and avoid their numbers.
There’s so many examples I can share that I see everyday where a person lets their emotions drive their decisions. Later on, when they cool off, they look back logically and say “what have I done?”
I’m not immune. I’ve done it many times but I’ve learned to spot the signs.
Here’s a few rules I follow…
- Always sleep on it. Your logic is lowest when something immediately happens and you’re more calm after a good night’s rest.
- Get outside eyes. Sometimes we have tunnel vision because we are too close to the problem. We need another person’s opinion who has no emotional attachment to the outcome. If it’s a business decision, get someone outside the company to have eyes on it. They have nothing to gain from the decision.
- Workout. Exercise helps you to physically process the thoughts in your mind. I have a whiteboard in my gym so I can braindump my thoughts when my blood is flowing.
- Write it down. There’s something about typing it in a word doc, email draft or notepad that forces you to collect your thoughts more clearly. It’s one of the reasons teaching is one of the best ways to help you learn something. When you are forced to create a slide deck or presentation, you have to make things simple for the audience to understand. Writing down the problem does the same.
It’s difficult to be aware that we are emotional but once you start to notice your patterns, you can catch it pretty easily. I will even say out loud “I can’t make a decision, I’m too emotionally stirred up right now.” to give myself permission to pause.
But when you attack the problem calmly and logically, you will often make a better decision.
When you attack it emotionally and upset, you will often make the worst decision.
Remember this moving forward….when emotions are up, logic is down.