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Image by Bjorn Snelders




I’m not sure why the domain of decision making fascinates me so much, but the more I discover, the more that it does!  I recently had a training session with my new company on the topic hosted by a top consultant and academic, Olivier Sibony.  The presentation focused on the concept of ‘noise’.  All the extraneous stimuli that gets in the way of us making sound decisions in business and in life.  For example our decisions are impacted by, and tend to be more severe when, we are hungry, after we have experienced a loss, after we have made a series of favorable judgements and on hot days… we can, it seems, become quite the ‘hot head’ 😊.  Olivier guided that we require ‘Decision Hygiene’ in order to counter the hangry, hot-head effect (as I call it) such as:

  • Diversity ! of independent inputs – however group dynamics can add bias through hierarchy, social influence and self-interest

  • Encouraging independence and expression of dissent – those rebels and disrupters can bring some positive insight after-all 😉

  • Rational adjustment to separate fact from opinion and

  • Utilizing intuition to confirm decisions rather than immediately following that gut hunch

The last bullet point there if you’ve been following along with me for a while, challenged my thinking and previous literature I had read that suggested our gut instincts tend to be correct, but that we need analytical thinking to QC our process in follow up.

How does this relate to yoga and somatics?  Well, our somatic marker circuitry involves our associative memory.  So outcomes we have experienced in the past will of course guide our trajectory.  The phenomenon of ‘insight’, on which I geek out on, has been shown to involve a greater skin conductance response and increased heart rate… ‘truth tingles’ anyone?  However! These responses are also associated with fear, so adrenaline junkies need to perhaps tread carefully.  When our somatic circuitry has been impacted by trauma, our gut feeling can be wrong and our intuition thrown off.  Which is why we need insight! I see insight as the balance point between our intuition and our rational mind, the mind of the genius. 

Perhaps, ‘genius’ is more a state of being than purely cognitive processing. Research has shown that an ‘impasse’ may be a precursor to the phenomenon of insight, where we find a break-through.  When we encounter states of polarity and feel constricted by conflict (internal and external), when we’re stuck between a rock and a hard place, so to speak.  ‘Stochasticity’, the notion of lacking any predictable plan and therefore increasing random inputs into our decision making process can assist a more complete investigation of possible solutions (like the diverse inputs Olivier recommended).  That all elusive ‘break-through’ perhaps is through finding a connection.  A common thread, the common ground from the diverse frames of reference we find in groups.

Other random facts for you: vagus nerve stimulation increases divergent thinking, where we can rationally explore many options; enhances creative performance and reduces our fear.  All necessary it would seem for making sound decisions.

Metaphysically, I have explored that every choice point on our walk-through life acts as a vector with each decision setting us forth along a trajectory of expanding consciousness. There is no ‘right way’ to hone our soul-craft, only a chain of events set in motion to exalt our true nature, more easily accomplished if we can grasp the deeper unfoldment of love.  With those we are connected to, our trajectories are interwoven with one another. There is reciprocity of vectors and trajectories, and as we make decisions that bring us closer or further away from our true nature and our alignment with source, creation, nature, so this is reflected within our world.  Perhaps there is hope then, for momentous breakthroughs and clear insight through these times of conflict.

Namaste, y’all.

Explore all this and more for your own lives and our collective at my next workshop:

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