When You Are in Crisis Mode You Make Bad Decisions


Tom Corley boats - crop

I love to study rich people and poor people. They always have pearls of wisdom, forged in the fire of experience, that force you to reevaluate the way you go about your life or how you think about things.

I was recently doing some research on Jon Taffer, the host of the award-winning show Bar Rescue.

One of the things Jon said really made me think. He said, “never allow anyone to rush you into making a decision. When you feel rushed, this puts you in crisis mode and causes you to make bad decisions.”

I’ve spent the better part of five years studying the brain. One of the important findings I made was that when we are under enormous stress, when we are in crisis mode, a part of the brain called the amygdala takes over. When it does, it partially shuts down the prefrontal cortex, the decision-making, command and control center of the brain.

When the prefrontal cortex is usurped by the amygdala, we become mindless zombies, unaware of important things going on around us in our environment and our lives.

You can see this in victims of accidents who go into shock. Shock victims are typically unresponsive, practically catatonic, unable to even hear the EMS people talking to them. When you go into shock, your amygdala takes over and your prefrontal cortex virtually shuts down.

When you allow negative emotions to control you, something similar, albeit watered down, is taking place. The amygdala becomes more active and the prefrontal cortex, less active. Making important decisions while in a negative emotional state can thus be catastrophic.

When you make a habit of allowing your negative emotions to control you, you are habituating poor decision-making.

This is why one of the Rich Habits is controlling your emotions. Those who make a habit of controlling their emotions allow their amazing prefrontal cortex to do its job; helping them to make good, sound decisions that benefit their lives.

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Thomas C. Corley About Thomas C. Corley

Tom Corley is a bestselling author, speaker, and media contributor for Business Insider, CNBC and a few other national media outlets.

His Rich Habits research has been read, viewed or heard by over 50 million people in 25 countries around the world.

Besides being an author, Tom is also a CPA, CFP, holds a master’s degree in taxation and is President of Cerefice and Company, a CPA firm in New Jersey.
Phone Number: 732-382-3800 Ext. 103.
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