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Head, Heart & Gut - Part 2, Making Better Decisions

Updated: Jan 11

In this series of posts, we have considered how tapping into our head, heart, and gut (a.k.a. our centers of intelligence) can help us find more balance in our lives. We have a dominant center and often overutilize it to the neglect of the other two centers. This explains the phenomenon of "getting stuck in our heads" or "feeling sick to our stomach with anxiety." When we intentionally tune into all three centers, though, we find natural ways to alleviate stress and bring more balance to our lives.

These three centers also offer valuable insights to help us make better decisions. Many of us have our preferred decision making strategies, perhaps in line with our dominant center. Thinking/ Head dominant types (enneagram types 5,6,7) may gravitate toward lists and research. Feeling/ Heart center types (enneagram types 2,3,4) may be led by their emotional response to the decision or opportunity. Intuition/ Gut center types (enneagram types 8,9,1) may often trust their instincts over data or emotions.

However, when we take time to work through a decision using all three centers of intelligence, we tune into clues we may have otherwise missed.

When you are facing a decision, take time to consider it through the lens of all three triads. Give some intentional reflection time to considering each center:

  • ·What is your heart telling you? What do you want? What emotions does each option elicit in you – excitement, joy, fear, anxiety, or some combination? Is fear driving your decision or hope? Try to unpack those emotions to understand what is driving them and what clues they may have to offer you.

  • What is your mind telling you? As you think through it, what are the benefits or trade-offs of moving in each direction? What is the impact on yourself and others? What risks are involved? What could go wrong? What information do you need to make an informed decision? What is incomplete or unknown?

  • What is your gut telling you? Are you instinctually moving toward or a