“The right word may be effective, but no word was ever as effective as a rightly timed pause.” ~ Mark Twain

Apply Consequential Thinking Definition: Evaluating the costs and benefits of your choices.

Importance: By pausing, evaluating and responding, rather than reacting on autopilot, we can make better decisions and live more meaningful lives.

Example: You are having a political discussion with a coworker, which is becoming increasingly heated. Instead of reacting with some sort of personal insult, you can choose to take a step back, a deep breath, think about the situation and where it fits in to your long term goals – and then carry on.

Applying Consequential Thinking helps you make optimal decisions. It empowers you to take ownership of your life and its direction. Instead of reacting and then later feeling regret, you can respond thoughtfully in any situation. Even a moment of planning can help you take the right actions rationally and emotionally.

How to Apply Consequential Thinking

Pause: The first step is to pause. For how long? Just six seconds makes a huge difference. Emotions are chemicals called neurohormones. It takes the body about six seconds for these molecules of emotion to get absorbed back in your body after they are produced. So give yourself six seconds and go from there!

Evaluate: This pause also offers an opportunity to evaluate the situation at hand. It may help to ask yourself questions about your short term and long term goals. What do I want to get accomplished? Is my current course of action helping me to accomplish those goals?

Respond: Now that you have paused and evaluated the situation, you are ready to respond mindfully.

Videos

Emotional Intelligence Articles about Applying Consequential Thinking

Illuminate: What Do You Really Want? (9/18/2019) by Maria Jackson - ...
Start Your Day on PURPOSE: Choose A Morning Ritual (3/4/2019) by Maria Jackson - Recent research suggests those with a morning ritual feel that their life is more meaningful. Set your daily intention by building a morning ritual... here's how. ...
Want a Good Long Life? 1 Clear Answer from Research (10/29/2018) by Maria Jackson - "It's useful to know it's a choice worth making." The results from an 80-year-long research study clearly identify what we should focus on for a long and fulfilled life. ...
Your Limiting Belief Demystified (10/22/2018) by Maria Jackson - It's prickly, but it's worth it. Learn more about your own limiting belief + tools for working through it, all thanks to the person who most annoys you. Take this moment to learn compassion- for yourself and for them. ...
How to Practice Emotional Intelligence: Tips for Choice (updated for 2018) (3/28/2018) by Michael Miller - Want to know how to practice emotional intelligence? Here are 10 expert tips from our worldwide network to choose yourself more effectively. ...
Four Steps to A More Intentional Life (3/6/2018) by Maria Jackson - A life coach shares her approach to practicing a life full of vision, meaning, and treasure hunts. ...
An (Emotionally Intelligent) Love Story (2/14/2018) by Maria Jackson - This Valentine's Day, I am two-weeks post-surgery. No fancy dinners or moonlit walks on the beach for me. But don't worry, I am still being extravagantly loved in the most emotionally intelligent way. ...
Apply Consequential Thinking in the Six Seconds EQ Model (3/25/2017) by Michael Miller - Sometimes we leap before we look... and make decisions we regret. How do we avoid this trap? It's an EQ skill called "Apply Consequential Thinking" and here's the essence. ...
Stressed for Good: Surprising New Science about Stress (7/22/2015) by Patty Freedman - Stress kills... or does it? In the light of new neuroscience, maybe it's time rethink stress - which might just save your life. ...
Ask More Powerful Questions (5/20/2014) by Six Seconds - What makes a powerful question? Teachers, coaches, parents who want to generate deeper thinking need to know these three levels - with video. ...

 

Click here for more Apply Consequential Thinking articles on our site

Recommended Tools

Think, Feel, Act Cards: One of the simplest and most powerful tools we’ve created, this hands-on tool increases awareness about choices.  The cards help people understand the differences between thoughts, feelings, and action by providing examples — and there are blank cards.  With a dry-erase marker, the blank cards can be turned into any other thought, feeling, or action.

Mixed Emotions: A tool that helps you make decisions, solve problems, resolve conflicts, and more.

Experiential Activities for Enhancing Emotional Intelligence: Experience the fun of adventure-based games with training in emotional awareness, behavioral control and relationship skills. This guide contains over 150 activities that can be adapted to virtually any group in any setting.

 

Michael Miller

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Introduction to the EQ tests Individual EQ Assessments
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