The nine second solution to decision making

business decision making life coaching May 25, 2021

A couple of years ago, I was on a flight from the east coast back to Portland where I live.

We were nearing landing, but we were in that time where you have to put all of your electronics away and just sit there as the plane descends and wait to get on the ground.

I tend to get a little antsy during this part of the flight.

I’m usually ready to stand up and get off the plane at this point, so I picked up one of those airline magazines in the back of the seat in front of me and started flipping through the pages to distract myself.

I came across an article about CEOs and the myriad of decisions they have to make all day long.

Big decisions.

Decisions that affect the bottom line, marketing, profit margins, public relations, all kinds of important things.

This part really floored me:

The article said that CEOs take an average of nine seconds to make a decision.


Clearly, you become more practiced at making decisions the more you have to make, but it got me thinking.

What if everyone had to make their decisions in nine seconds?

How much less time could we spend tormented with pro and con lists if we just listened to our gut, experience, and wisdom and MADE A DECISION?

So, I started testing it out.

Whenever a friend or family member would come to me with a decision they were stuck on, I would ask them,

“If you had nine seconds to decide, what would you do?”

And you know what?



Usually as soon as I asked them the question.

The truth is we KNOW what we need to do.

We may not be ready to do it.

We may be afraid of that path.

We may know that it’s the more uncertain path, but the right one.

We may know that what we want right now is not what we will always want… but it’s an important choice for now.

But we KNOW what is right for us.

The only time I’ve had anyone unable to answer this question is when they were in too much of a heightened state to focus.

The question in itself felt too stressful.

Now if that person went and took a walk and a soothing bath and drank some tea and I asked them again, they would have an answer in seconds.

So, the next time you’re stuck or a friend is stuck, ask them, “If you had nine seconds to decide, what would you do?”

And here’s a pro tip for you.

There are always THREE answers available via intuition.

  1. Yes

  2. No

  3. Wait

Wait can be just as viable an option as yes and no.

Try this decision making process out this week on a few small choices and see how it works out for you.

If you want help making stronger decisions for your life path or your business, just reply to this email with the word DECISIONS and we’ll set up a time to talk. <3

Until next week you beautiful human!

I’m sending you so much love,


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