How many of us feel overwhelmed by choices? I hear it from clients and I feel it myself. There are so many choices for how to spend our most precious resources; time and money. Research has shown that in fact, there are too many choices.
By now you may be aware of a surprise finding from a professor of psychology, Dr. Barry Schwartz from Swarthmore College.
His research showed that having more choices does not make us happier; in fact, not only is decision-making more difficult, we are less happy with whatever we choose if we are able to choose at all.
Neuroscientists conducted research among a group of college students showing that as the information overload increased, so did activity in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, (PFC) the region behind the forehead that is responsible for decision-making and the control of emotions.
As pressure increases, people started making stupid choices because the brain region responsible for smart decisions shuts down.
Frustration and anxiety soared.
What can leaders and influencers learn from this? The more plugged- in we are to our information-laden, technology-dependent, and completely connected 24/7 world, the more vulnerable we are to complete mental meltdown. We need tools to help keep the PFC from shutting down.
The good news is that there is something we can all do about this problem.
The best tool I know of is free, simple and accessible. It is breath. Learning how to breathe properly helps calm down the highly- charged neural circuitry of choice overwhelm. It allows us to disrupt the shutdown switch and “keep the lights on” in our brains, behavior, and lives.
My clients have utilized this tool to help create significant improvements in decision-making, prioritizing, clarity, and focus in just a few sessions. We practice how to transfer the gains from their individualized learning directly into their workplace agendas. Things flow more easily.They improve efficiency, effectiveness, and satisfaction.
If this piques your interest, please post a comment.
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