the “sit on it” rule

Some things it’s best not to decide on immediately, or especially in the “heat of the moment” (or the whatever of the moment – disappointment, frustration, upset, joy, fear, terror … whatever it may be). Sure, some things do or may require immediate action or reaction, but many/most things don’t. So generally let it sit a bit – be that minutes, hours, days, weeks, or more. That doesn’t mean postpone action or decision forever. But rather it means don’t be unnecessarily rushed or rash about “it”. Particularly if it is or may be rather to quite important, and actual decision or action (or choosing not to act) can wait.

Random examples, including actual personal, practical, and hypothetical (and not gonna say which is which):

Someone does something upsetting – if it’s not a huge deal, let it slide at least a while – maybe that’s not at all what they intended. If there’s no need to react immediately (e.g. different if one needs to change something that’s in progress), then maybe just come back to it later if and as follow-up or adjustment/reaction, etc. is appropriate. In the meantime, some more time, cooler heads, etc., often quite likely one will come up with better approach(es), and the person might also be much more approachable a bit later too.

Enthralled with someone? Sure, generally good/okay to show that … within reason. But too much too soon can go badly … slow it down, give it some time/space. If it’s quite genuine, it’ll generally build quite well and solidly enough anyway, and probably more solidly than if things go too far too fast. Take at least wee bit of breather to reassess feelings – and the reality – of the situation and person, etc.

Important life decisions. Sure, those decisions generally need be made, and ought not be deferred too long. But a lot of the time when something comes up, don’t need to answer, react, or respond immediately. E.g. just got offered another job? Not 100% sure about it, or want to be sure you’re not mistaken? Take a bit of time – ask ’em when they need to know back by – typically if they’ve gone so far as to extend the offer, usually they can stand up to 3 or more business days to get an “answer” from you. Consider it carefully and thoroughly – both logically, and how it feels. If there are others involved it is or may be significant to – e.g. spouse/family – take the time to discuss it with them too. Generally one need not accept a job offer on-the-spot, and typically don’t even need to answer by next business day.

Sh*t happens. How you gonna deal with it? Again, in a lot of cases, there’s no pressing need to address it immediately. Take time to asses the situation and options. Often some moderate amount of additional time to consider, “research”, etc., as fitting, will often lead to rather to quite better decision … or maybe the same decision anyway, but with a much better and well founded confidence level in the decision.


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