And it always does.
Bad decisions happen for one of two reasons:
A. You’re in a huge hurry and you can’t process all the incoming properly. But more common…
B. The repercussions of your decision won’t happen for months or years. This is why we don’t save for retirement, don’t pay attention to long-term environmental issues, and, tragically, tolerate (or fall prey to) irrational rants about things like vaccines. It might be engaging or soothing to promote a palliative idea now, but years later, when innocent kids are sick and dying, the regrets are real.
A bad decision isn’t only bad because we’re uninformed or dumb. It can be bad because we are swayed by short-term comfort and ignore long-term implications. A bad decision feels good in the short run, the heartfelt decision of someone who means well. But there’s a gap when we get to the long run.
Eula Biss has written a beautiful, honest book about this gap. About how we can fall into the trap of being well-meaning, emotional and loud in the short run, but how the truth of time changes the way we see things.
Our job as leaders (and we all are, in our own way) is to elevate the long run on behalf of those we care about, regardless how hard the marketing and tribal noise around us encourages to fall prey to instant comfort.
Everyone has feelings and opinions, but the future ignores them.