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THE STATES OF MIND THAT DETERMINE QUALITY DECISION MAKING

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The spirit belongs to God – the mind belongs to man. What we do with what belongs to us affects our decisions, and our decisions affect our actions – our actions are the denouement of our entire life.

Those many mornings when we wake up, and something we can’t decipher irritates our minds, and for the arbitrary, we grimace, and sometimes scream. And also, for the innocent children in the house that try to cheer our day up, we make victims of the state of our minds, as their good morning to us make us even more irritant – it’s just our state of mind; the very way we feel even if we can’t really place it. In the poem, Apply Within, Suzy Kassem wrote, “You once told me you wanted to save the world from all its wars – and I told you to first save yourself from the world, and all the wars you put yourself through.”

Our choices, our egos, our decisions – all embedded in that little cubicle called mind, and the mind; a genetic combination of the spirit and flesh. The way we manage this genetic entity determines what we give to the world and what the world gives to us. Our relationship with self and our relationship outside self are all decided by the state of our lovely minds. If we lose, we first lose in our minds – if we win, we first win in our minds. The lighting eyes and the glowing heads are the outcomes of un-littered minds. The dimming eyes and the zigzag veins underneath the wrinkled foreheads are the reactions of cluttered minds.

Many a time, we have made weighty decisions with cluttered minds and some of those decisions have come to hurt us. We weren’t mad, but we were mad because the conclusions we made took breath out of the living and put them in states where they see nothing but the abyss. We weren’t bad people, but our actions were bad as we succumbed to the foggy minds.

Don’t write your autobiography when you see men as trees because when you find no fruits in them, you’ll chop them down. Don’t read the roadmap and make yourself a navigator when you sense yourself temporarily in a state of dementia. Don’t interpret abstract art when your eyes go dim – you may see nothing and say you saw something nude. Enough of havoc where there should be harmony. Until all mental bollards are removed and the mind set free of impediments, all decision making should be put on hold. When then can we be in healthy mental states to make quality decisions?

A Clear Head: when the weather is foggy, a pilot makes a decision not to fly, because if he does, he faces a great risk of crash. When the sea rages with a boisterous storm, the sailor knows it’s unwise to steer the ship into a maddening wave – it’s suicidal to act otherwise. When the mind’s eyes don’t see clearly because it’s beclouded by unscrupulous circumstances, it only makes sense not to deliberate on highly sensitive issues and conclude or sign it off because such hasty decisions might come back to hurt. Some people in leadership positions make bad decisions because they probably took them when inundated by bedevilling conditions. If you make decisions with an unclear head, you’ll beat yourself when the weather gets better.

Un-predetermined Mind: until you hear from all sides with unbiased mind or see the true colors of the pictures, prejudice will mislead you. Never preempt the storyteller when he’s only said the introduction. The problem with those who stereotype is that they’re almost always 100% wrong. The black who thinks every white is a racist isn’t different from the white who thinks every black is aggressive. You can’t predetermine in your mind what the conclusions should be over issues that need closer examinations and come up with quality decisions.

Inclination: if you place a piece of wood on a fence, the wood inclines. Inclination leans on a wall – this also happens in decision making. When you are already leaning before deciding, you’re bound to make a conclusion based on your inclination, and most often, this may be biased. Your degree of inclination may determine the gravity or consequence of any decision made. Some people make very serious decisions based on sentiments, and those decisions become devastating on a short or long run. When inclined, mind the type of decisions you make.

The Colorless Mind: the only color the heart should have is that of blood – anything else is evil. Making decisions based on race is detrimentally biased. Let me point out that it isn’t only in the west that racism exists – I have seen Africans of one color living in Africa racially discriminate against Africans of other colors. I have also seen Indians of one color senselessly discriminate against Indians and Africans of other colors. Never ever make decisions based on racism because you’ll definitely get it wrong. A Colorless mind will always win.

Ethnocentric Mind: ethnicity is the major cause of civil wars in Africa and some parts of Asia. In Rwanda, most recently, the civil war was an agenda underpinned by ethnic cleansing, and for that, so many lives were wasted. Racism and ethnocentrism never make common sense decisions. Don’t make a decision based on where you come from – make decisions based rational and logical thinking.

The Classless Mind: any decision making beclouded by social grading might be counterproductive. This is where so many people have made mistakes. Class most usually creates wrong perceptions and stereotypism. When you judge a person from just one angle when there are many areas to look at, you’re bound to get it wrong. It hurts when people are isolated based on what they have, what they are and the status they belong to. Daily, many are being unfairly adjudged because those who judge them think they’re nothing, but some who have been nothing in the past, and have fought their ways through opposing forces have proven that hasty conclusions are aberrations. Never write anyone off – everyone is a bundle of success packaged in clay – when they purify, their treasures get revealed. Even those who didn’t purify are still treasures, only that you can’t see it. Quality decision making requires an unbiased state of mind – if you prejudge, preempt or presume, the possibility of straying is predominant.

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Ken is a leadership Motivation, Strategy and Personal Development Writer, Blogger and Speaker. He writes for a number of magazines and blogs. He is also a mentor and published author of several books.

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