Stop running red lights


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Running a red light in order to theoretically save a few precious seconds is one of the dumbest, most irrational things people do. Yet we do it all the time, in business and in real life.

Hi I’m Holly G. Green, the Architect of Pause, thinking to thrive expert, and author of the new book, Using Your Brain to Win. As human beings, we like to consider ourselves rational creatures. But the faster the world moves, the less rational we get. And the more the world speeds up, the more we shut down our critical thinking processes and simply react in the moment.

Running a red light is based on multiple incorrect assumptions. The first, and most illogical, is that getting to our destination a minute or two faster is more important than our own personal safety or the safety of those around us. Another belief – or thought bubble, as I like to call them – might be that if we stop for the light, the car behind will plow into us. And of course there’s the old standby rationalization – I’m in a hurry, everyone else does it, so why shouldn't I?

When we pause to think about it, there’s no good reason for running a red light. We know it’s dangerous. We know it’s against the law. Yet we rationalize away the danger, tell ourselves we won’t get caught, and do it anyway.

Worst of all, the rationalization happens so quickly we don’t even realize we’re doing it. We simply stop thinking and react. And every time we do it, we train our brains to shortcut the thinking process and react in the moment, no matter how inappropriate our reaction.

We run red lights in business by doing the same thing – shutting down our thinking processes and letting unfounded beliefs, assumptions and thought bubbles drive our decisions and actions. As a result, we make critical business decisions based on all the things we assume to be true but never take the time to verify.

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Stop running red lights

  1. 1. Running red lights is stupid in life & in business! Have you ever made a dumb management decision?
  2. 2. Underlying assumptions Getting there faster is worth it… Someone will hit me if I stop… Everyone else does it…
  3. 3. Underlying assumptions at work Our competition will never catch us… We can’t lower our costs… The market isn’t ready… That’s the way our industry does it…
  4. 4. We are not logical, rational creatures! The faster we try to go, the less rational we get
  5. 5. Most of the time reacting instantly does not serve us well because it usually stems from underlying assumptions and beliefs that have no basis in reality
  6. 6. Every time we just run or respond, we train our brains to shortcut the thinking process & react in the moment, no matter how inappropriate our reaction
  7. 7. Rather than simply reacting to sped & change, we need to: Pause – stop at the red light, visit your brain Think – check your underlying thought bubbles while waiting When you have real data to support your conclusions, put the pedal to the metal, staying within the speed limit, of course
  8. 8. The next time you’re tempted to run a red light in your business or in your car, take a moment to think about what’s really important. The right decision could be a lifesaver for you & your business
  9. 9. Practice pausing & thinking to stay focused on really winning versus just going fast. Contact if you want to win in business!
  10. 10. Holly G. Green the architect of pause™ & thinking to thrive expert