It's easy for your mind to lead you up the garden path when it comes to making a good decision. Below are ways to avoid the common pitfalls.
CLEAR YOUR MIND Judgements can often be based on a piece of information you have recently had in mind, even if it is irrelevant. For example, bidding high at an auction after pondering the height of the tallest person in the room.
DON'T FALL FOUL OF SPIN We have an inclination to be strongly influenced by the way a problem is framed. For instance, people are more likely to spend a monetary award immediately if they are told it is a bonus, compared with a rebate.
DON'T LET EMOTIONS GET IN THE WAY They often interfere with our assessment of risk. One example is our natural reluctance to cut our losses on a falling investment because it might start rising again.
BE FACT BASED Don't allow your beliefs and opinions to cloud your analysis.
THINK CAREFULLY ABOUT THE LONG-TERM CONSEQUENCES When considering how a course of action will make you feel, talk to someone who has been through a similar situation rather than try to imagine your future state of mind; run mental movies about how an option might play out.
LOOK BEYOND THE OBVIOUS SOLUTION Don't accept the first thing that pops into your head.