You know you’ve royally messed up once a paradox on decision making gets named after you, and how appropriate that this royal mess-up would be named after real royalty – King Solomon. A wise man when it came to dispensing advice to all around him, Solomon led his own life with much less wisdom. How can that be? Wisdom is wisdom, knowledge is knowledge and it should be equally dispensed, right? Not really. Have you noticed how much easier it is to give good advice but can’t seem to untangle your own struggles? Congratulations! You’re human and have fallen into a common pitfall of psychology. You’ll get all paradoxy here because of the (dis)ability to distance yourself from the issue.
As it happens, when you are listening to someone’s problem, although you care about them, you still have an emotional distance from the situation and are not badgered by having to process this “irrelevant” data. You’ll stand back and see the big picture more easily identifying few crucial points to which you can then employ the triage method and deal with the most pressing things first in order to solve the situation. You truly are more intelligent when giving advice to others.
When the tables turn, which they undoubtedly will at one point, you are like a spoiled blind mole with a microscope. You have an emotional charge around the decision, and as we tend to give more value to things just because they are ours, you’ll give far more leverage than necessary to your emotions that might or might not be appropriate for the situation. You’ll over analyze and obsess about random details just because you are too attached to a certain outcome or are trying to avoid generating more uncomfortable feelings with the decision and make worse choices.
So what to do here? It’s very simple, some advices you’ve heard from your grandma were actually the best, even though she couldn’t back it up with research of neurological patterns. Emotions are clouding your judgement by draining mental energy so go take a walk, calm down, clear your head, breathe, sleep on it, move away so that the pixel you’re staring at can fall into place in a larger picture, ask for advice and this time really take them into consideration – others really do see better here, it’s not your fault, just psychology awarding you temporary unwisdom of an emotional turmoil. Even if you don’t choose the best decision in the end don’t worry – we all make mistakes and you’re in the company of kings with that.