“You should not decide until you have heard what both sides have to say.”
—Aristophanes, 4th Century BC Greek Playwright
Image from Unsplash by Ehimetalor Unuabono
Do you ever say — aloud or perhaps even more often to yourself — “My mind is made up” or “I know!”? How often do you get the impression that others in your personal or professional communities express similar thoughts?
If these scenarios sound familiar, you are probably dealing with what I call “Shortcut Listening.” This happens when an individual or group gathers just enough information to fill in the rest of the word puzzles based on their own opinions, experiences, and biases.
Where and with whom would taking the long road of listening help you and others make far better decisions at work and at home?
“The majority of meetings should be discussions that lead to decisions.”
—Patrick Lencioni, Founder of The Table Group
Image from Unsplash by Content Creators
Death by Meeting is one of Patrick Lencioni’s numerous books. He first made his mark with his classic, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, from which his business fable format gained considerable popularity.
How do you feel about the meetings you attend? How many, how long, and perhaps most importantly, how productive are these often stolen parts of your day?
Given the concept that people participate more fully in that which they help create, try using the More, Less, Start, Stop Exercise to upgrade the engagement and value of your meetings.
Please also check out Death by Meetings for additional ideas that can benefit you and your organization.
FRIDAY REVIEW: DECISIONS
What is your decision-making process? Here are a few decision-related posts you may have missed. Click each link to read the full message.
“When at a conflict between mind and heart, always follow your heart.”
“Is the juice worth squeezing?”
“Create each day anew.”
The Latin root of the word “decision” literally means “to cut.”
Where are you currently wrestling with a life decision? How long has this issue been on your mind, and perhaps a cause of sleepless nights?
For most of us, making the right or best decision is of significant importance and can have considerable payoffs or consequences.
What if you used today’s quote as a way of assisting you by simply limiting or cutting off some, most, or the majority of the options you may be considering?
Consider looking up the book or the term The Paradox of Choice. See how this concept can assist you in making even better decisions in the future.
“Play the tiles you get.”
Image from Flickr by Joe King
In her book, 365 Days of Wonder, R.J. Palacio shares a charming story of her grandparents. Both avid Scrabble players, they played every day for more than 50 years.
Her grandfather, known as being the “intellectual,” almost always lost to his wife, who was primarily a homemaker, not the lawyer who graduated from Columbia.
Grandma Nelly was quite smart in her own right. She loved crossword puzzles. She had a miraculous ability to make the most of the tiles she was given rather than waiting to use the highest value tiles on double or triple word spaces. That was grandpa’s strategy.
In what areas of life are you waiting to get better tiles? What would be the value and benefit of learning to play the ones you currently have, and those you receive each day?
“Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire called conscience.”
Image from crosswalk.com
What do the first President of the United States, Jiminy Cricket from Disney’s Pinocchio, and Marvin Gay of Motown fame have in common?
Washington’s quote may give it away, with his coaching to always let your conscience be your guide. Jiminy Cricket is the voice of conscience for Pinocchio. And for Marvin Gaye fans, it was the debut single released from his first album, The Soulful Moods of Marvin Gaye.
How often do you recognize the inner voice, or the sense of what is right or wrong in your actions, or the actions of others? Where do the issues of ethics or moral principles influence, guide, or control your thoughts and actions? You may even hear the voices of a parent, teacher, or spiritual guide from years ago.
How and in what ways can you use the celestial fires of conscience to make important personal or professional decisions today, and in the future?
“Intuition becomes increasingly valuable in the new information society precisely because there is so much data.”
-John Naisbitt, American Author and Specialist in Future Studies
When was the last time you did a Google search? What subject were you investigating? How many hits did you get, and how many were actually relevant to your inquiry?
I recall doing book reports in my youth, going to the library, or examining my own World Book Encyclopedia to piece together my paper.
Today, we have infinite amounts of information on most subjects. Navigating the world with some sense of sanity has made our intuitive skills and abilities of discernment more important than ever before.
What are some of your most useful intuitive strategies to sort through the volumes of information to help you make optimal decisions? Consider seeking input on this subject from others, to discover ideas you might not have considered. This may be just the data you need most.
“Make decisions by design, rather than default.”
⏤Greg McKeown, author of Essentialism
Seth Godin is one of my favorite authors. He has been blogging longer than almost anyone, and has written somewhere around 20 books. I particularly enjoy his provocative and edgy thinking on a large number of diverse subjects, especially when it come to being the leader in our own lives.
His recent book, What to Do When It’s Your Turn, points out that it is always our turn if, as today’s quote suggests, we make our own life decisions by design, not defaulting to the decisions of those around us.
Examine the degree to which you make your own important life decisions by design rather than default. How can you “choose yourself” more often, and decide that it is your turn to lead the life you were meant to live?