When faced with a tough decision, human beings experience anxiety.
When it hits, many of us have learned to escape by reaching for a piece of cake.
We call this emotional eating.
In the business world though, cake isn’t as readily available (unless maybe you work at Entenmann’s). So instead we call a meeting.
I call this emotional meeting.
The great thing about meetings is they provide the same comfort and certainty as food without the pesky weight gain. And they make you look busy. Call enough and you might even get promoted.
The problem with giving in to this impulse, is it becomes an addiction. Just like smoking cigarettes, or shopping, or any mechanism that you use to cope with emotional unrest, soon you do it automatically without even realizing it.
Fortunately, it’s possible to break the addiction. The key is realizing that habits don’t get eliminated, they get replaced. I suggest a new habit: take a deep breath, and first, before anything, decide how to decide.
Easier said than done, but that moment of clarity, when you refuse to succumb to the anxiety and instead give yourself the power of real choice, is where true leadership is realized.