“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.
Emotional Intelligence Articles about Applying Consequential Thinking
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.