How to make a good decision when under pressure

If you are someone that has to make decisions under pressure then the best first step is to learn to create time out frequently to allow yourself quality thinking time. To start with this it might feel like a step back but the more you do it the faster your decision making will become.

Here are some tips that work for our clients on how to make a good decision when under pressure:


  • Plan creative thinking time in advance and allow yourself time to think things through so that fewer decisions are made under pressure without consideration
  • Move physically away from the pressure and create space and time to process the information
  • After a decision has been made reflect on what worked and what didn’t work about the process you used to make that decision


There is plenty of evidence that those who are trained to make decision under pressure take the time out before and after to review and develop the skills in order that it becomes autopilot when they are truly under pressure.

Emergency service drivers such as police and ambulance

These services take time out on specific tracks to learn and embed certain behaviour and responses until they become automatic responses. I am pretty sure they don’t just practice on our streets.

I recently read an article about how the Colorado state police train, they say it is important to be able to do things like turn the sirens and lights on automatically so that you have your attention on the road 100%. They repeat this process over and over again until it is automatic. This is a great metaphor for leadership in business or parenting through change or crisis.

In order to be able to stay on track with the end goal, it is essential to get the everyday decisions embedded and automatic so you can stay focused. The more that you can develop the ‘decision making muscle’ the more effective and productive you and your communications will be.

British police whilst training to drive at high speed are invited to verbalise while driving what is happening.

It therefore makes sense that if you verbalised what is happening when you are making decisions and even more so what is happening when you make a good decision, you could create a more effective decision making process for yourself.

It helps you to make good decisions under pressure if you take time out to think them through.


  • What is happening for you right now?
  • Want to develop your decision making process so that you can manage yourself and others more effectively?
  • Would you like to learn more about how to make a good decision when under pressure?


If you would like more information on how to make a good decision when under pressure please contact Sheryl Andrews at Step By Step Listening or sign up to our Free Guide or Social Media networks to get more information and to stay in touch with us.

About the author

Sheryl Andrews, MD and founder of Step by Step Listening and mum of a blended family of 5 children, is no stranger to challenging conversations, lack of self belief and an overwhelming sense of not being enough. On the outside to everyone else you might have thought all was okay but how she was feeling inside was a different story. 6 years ago she discovered Clean Language developed by David Grove in the 1980’s, which is a questioning technique that is fast becoming the most effective way to change thoughts into action. It has been fundamental in providing Sheryl and her business partner Ros with the resources they needed to grow an international business whilst maintaining harmony at home.

When you improve how you listen to yourself and others you can increase customer retention and influence how often your clients refer and recommend you.

With a free no obligation chat what have you got to lose? Apart from the problem?

How to make good decisions

Sheryl Andrews

Founder and Communication Coach


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