How to Identify When Your Brain is Taking a Harmful Shortcut

Gut reactions can be good in some situations, but they’re actually the result of your brain taking a shortcut. When you rely on intuition, you’re using your limbic system—the part of the brain responsible for emotions—and unfortunately it doesn’t have a good track record for making the best decisions, says Kerry Goyette, author of The Non-Obvious Guide to Emotional Intelligence and CEO and founder of Aperio Consulting Group, a corporate consulting firm.

The prefrontal cortex is the part of the brain that solves problems or creates strategy. It takes a lot of energy to do its job. It’s here, though, where you can tap into emotional intelligence (EQ) to analyze perceived threats and override the brain’s instinct.

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