Emotion is a mental state associated with the actions of our nervous system. It greatly influences our thoughts, feelings, behavioral responses, our degree of pleasure and displeasure. It is one of the leading factors that determines our life and how well we are going to live it.
Emotions are something we should always lookout for or rather be mindful of, because it can be our muse and at the same time the pathway that leads to our doom. Nothing true actually comes out of it. When you make emotions the foundation upon which decisions are built, then be ready to live a life of chaos. If the decisions you made out of emotions later turn out to be the correct one, don't jubilate, it may just be a coincidence. Although, it makes our decisions seem right and flawless but in reality, its actually a bait that lures us into the dungeons we may find difficult breaking out of.
In this article, we’re taking a short trip into emotions – negative emotions specifically and how they affect our decisions making.
Anger and decisions making
Never make a decision when you're angry. Negative emotions decrease our ability to reason. This happens because the brain is more focused on the emotional state of sadness or anger that is being felt instead of concentrating on making reasonable decisions or finding creative solutions.
Fear and decision making
Fear is an evolved response that warn us about dangerous situations, unexpected obstacles or failures. We don’t feel fear in order to feel distressed, It's rather there to help us navigate potential danger successfully. Embracing the emotion of fear and exploring why it arises can help you prepare yourself proactively to tackle situations ahead. But when not appropriately handled, it often lead us away from rational thought, making our decision miserable.
Anxiety and decision making
Anxiety has many ways of injecting itself into life and causing lots of chaos. One of ways anxiety interferes is by leading decision-making astray. Pre-frontal cortex (PFC), is the part of the brain that is essential for making good decisions, it brings flexibility into our decisions making. It helps to weigh up consequences, planning, and processing thoughts in a logical and rational way.
In a research, scientists at the University of Pittsburgh discovered that anxiety can interfere negatively with this part of the brain by reducing the brain’s capacity to screen out distractions. Our brain is configured to spot out distractions and find a way of overcoming them. But when under the influence of anxiety, the brain is frustrated, making it hard to cope with decision making.
Emotions are the most present, pressing and sometimes painful forces in our lives. We are driven day by day by it. But not letting it control us and our everyday decisions, is one of the best way of taking good control of our lives in general and the challenges we face on a daily basis. It may interest you to know that your emotions are your only problem in life. If you can take control of it, you can take control of your entire life.