Ask this question when what you’re considering just doesn’t feel right.
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Is there a tension that deserves my attention? Is there a tension, an internal tension that deserves my attention? Let me explain it this way. Sometimes, and in fact more times than maybe we want to admit, an option we’re considering creates a little tension inside of us. It’s just a bit uncomfortable. Something about it doesn’t seem exactly right. It gives us pause, it bothers us, it causes us to hesitate. And sometimes we have no idea why. In fact, I’ve heard people refer to this experience as a red flag moment, an internal sense of, “I’m not sure why, but something about this just isn’t right.” That’s what I mean by a tension. And when that happens, you’ve gotta pause and pay attention to that tension. Pause and ask yourself: What about this bothers me? Don’t ignore it, don’t brush it off, don’t look around it. What does everybody else say? And does it bother anybody else? Pay attention to that tension. Now, at this point you might be thinking, “Andy, I don’t make decisions based on my emotions, I just look at the facts and then I decide, so this whole tension thing, this seems way to emotional, way too intangible for me,” but here’s the thing, science tells us that when we have these red flags moments, it’s actually a specific part of our brain alerting us to pay attention. And when we pause, we stand a better chance of making a better decision. So, pay attention to the tension.