Several years ago, I was enjoying a tasty Texas BBQ lunch with a manager at my company, when he said, “Bobby, I’ve noticed you use the same way to make a decision, no matter if it is a six-pack of Cokes or 6,000 cases of Coke.”
I took that as a compliment about how I made principled decisions, and I thanked him.
He went on to state a certain strong conviction that he had, which I had heard him mention before.
He went even further to tell me about a decision that his daughter made that was against this strong conviction. However, he surprised me when he said that he agreed with his daughter.
He could tell I had somewhat of a puzzled look on my face, and he said, “Bobby, when it is your daughter, it is different!”
As you can see, he was making an expedient (emotional) decision based on the situation.
One thing I’ve learned about life is…
Your emotions can easily override your intellect. – Bobby Albert
People who consistently say one thing but do something different, choose to behave based of their emotion (in an expedient way) and not on their character (in a principled way).
Every person can make better decisions by understanding the differences between emotional and character-based decision-making.
People who behave expediently (emotion-driven), do what’s easiest, or what makes them the happiest in the short-run.
Those, who are principled (character-driven), think about what is right in the long-run. They are self-disciplined to do what is right even though it might not be the easiest, or the quickest, or the most enjoyable thing to do!
When faced with situations that might test our character, we can use the following information to help us reach principled, character-building decisions.
|Character-Driven People||Emotion-Driven People|
|Do right, then feel good||Feel good, then do right|
|Are commitment-driven||Are convenience-driven|
|Make principle-based decisions||Make popular-based decisions|
|Action controls attitude||Attitude controls action|
|Believe it, then see it||See it, then believe it|
|Create momentum||Wait for momentum|
|Ask: What are my responsibilities?||Ask: What are my rights?|
In short, character-driven people are willing to do things emotion-driven people will not bother to do!
Character-driven people enjoy long-term success, while emotion-driven people usually wind up on the road to failure.
People who behave in an expedient way find it more convenient to wait and to react to the urgent things in life and in business.
They are often guided by emotion, and choose to make popular decisions that are rooted in unhealthy fears. While at the same time, they worry about protecting their rights.
Emotional decisions made in haste lead to poor outcomes.
Make better decisions
People who behave in a principled way make better decisions as they seek what is right and then hold to those convictions.
They are pro-active, and focus on what is important vs. the urgent things in life and business. And they fill their calendar with their priorities vs. by other people’s requests.
Rather than jumping to what looks like a greener pasture on the other side, they first invest in fertilizing the pasture they are in currently.
They also choose to trust the process which leads to the right/principled decisions that are rooted in faith. While at the same time, they accept their responsibilities which come with their rights.
Do you want to make better decisions? It's possible, if you focus on making character-driven decisions based on principle, instead of expedient, emotion-driven decisions.
How do you make decisions? Are they based on the situation? Are they character-driven or emotion-driven? Please share your thoughts <here> and pass this blog post to a friend or co-worker.