Prior to my wife and I having our first child a few years ago, we did what many expectant parents do and bought the books and took the classes to prepare ourselves.
Given the onslaught of decisions that comes along with pregnancy and childbirth, we were introduced to a simple 5-step framework to make those decisions. This framework has stuck with me, while it was presented in the context of parenting, it can be applied to any decision you ever need to make.
So here it is…
The secret to doing (or not doing) whatever is in front of you is simple.
The secret is using your B.R.A.I.N. to get clear on the…
B Benefits – What will you get, have, or become?
R Risks – What could go wrong? How permanent and likely is that really?
A Alternatives – What other ways could get you the result that you want? How else could you invest the time and resources you are about to commit?
I Intuition – What does your gut tell you?
N Nothing – What would happen if you did nothing at all?
As you can see, there are simple steps to help you avoid making snap decisions. I can tell you from experience, it’s worth taking a moment to actually go through each of these steps (even only for a moment).
This framework is also an excellent format for questioning any relevant experts related to whatever decision you need to make. Whether it's your doctor or a salesperson, having their answers to each of these 5 steps of consideration will simplify your decision.
In conclusion, don’t forget to use your B.R.A.I.N. for making decisions. Always ask the right questions even if you don’t have the right answers.