Psychologists agree that there are two brain pathways involved in decision-making, an emotional one governed by the amygdala, and a rational one governed by the prefrontal cortex. The amygdala’s job is to intervene when faced with difficult decisions that have emotional implications.
To understand how this affects the decisions made by both men and women, neuroscience professor Larry Cahill edited an entire journal of neuroscience dedicated to this. Read also Are men more angry than women in Ramadan?Pregnancy and malnutrition are among them .. Learn early on the causes of baldness in women Animal rescue campaign … Beautify women’s eyes for poor Ralph’s rabbit’s tears In a new study … “Zoom fatigue” is more prevalent among women
As a start, it can be said that the amygdala in men tends to be larger than the amygdala in women. However, their modus operandi is different for each. While both men and women are concerned about the consequences of their decisions, especially with regard to moral dilemmas, women tend to be much more concerned with avoiding harm than men. This means that they are more likely to avoid “rational” decisions in favor of more “emotional” decisions.
But does taking care to avoid harm aiding better decision-making?
Says a professor of psychology at the University of North Florida , Dr. Tracy Pakiam Alloway in an essay on her psychological site Today ( Psychology today ) if it is different depending on the situation, if the woman is in a position to give up it for anything you want, a job offer for example, because it is concerned about the impact Negatively to another person, then this may not be a positive thing.
If you think you will make an emotional decision that is not in your favor, and you want to reverse that decision, then there is an unexpected solution and that is exposure to stress.
Over 100 participants sat in my lab listening to various ethical dilemmas, Buckyam Alway says. During some of these dilemmas, participants were asked to place their left hand in a bucket of ice water cooled to about 34 degrees Fahrenheit for one minute. This task is designed to raise stress levels.
Relationship of stress to decision-making
The results showed that the results of the physical stress caused by ice water tipped the scales when it came to making decisions, as the participants changed their initial emotional response to a more rational response. Why did this happen?
Buckyam Alway says that for women, the default position in difficult emotional decisions is often amygdala, which is dependent on the amygdala. But with the introduction of physical pressure, the amygdala is occupied with sounding an alarm in response to the stressful factor, then deactivating after the pressure is removed. This creates a window of opportunity for the prefrontal cortex, the rational part of the brain, to step in and take control.
Thus, experiencing stress for a short time (just one minute) burdens your emotional mind so you can switch to using your rational mind to make a decision. Advertising
Two wrong concepts
To learn more about the key differences between the way men and women make decisions, journalist Cathy Cabrino gave an interview to Forbes, with Dr. Therese Heston, author of “How Do Women Decide: What’s Right and What’s Not?”
Houston says that there is a very common perception that when a woman is stressed she becomes emotional and collapses, but when men are stressed they remain calm and clear. Neuroscientists have found that both common concepts are wrong.
Mara Mather, a cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Southern California, found that when people are under stress, men become more anxious to take risks. It turns out that men focus on rewards when their heart rates and cortisol levels rise, even if the chances of achieving that reward are slim.
Conversely, if you put women in the same stressful situation and increased their cortisol levels, you would see something somewhat different about decision making. They will focus more on risk ratios, take longer to assess contingencies, and be more concerned with smaller rewards that they can rely on.
Thus it turns out that women, rather than collapsing under pressure, have unique strengths in the decision-making process.
According to Houston, this is a good reason why both men and women should be in the same place when we are making high-stakes decisions. We need both to balance each other when tensions run high.
Why are men rumored to be better?
“We used to give credit to men, not women,” Houston says. Research shows that when a group successfully solves a problem and it is ambiguous about who deserves praise for the main contribution to decision-making, both men and women usually assume the credit belongs to one of the men.
The woman’s intuition
When some refer to what is known as “a woman’s intuition,” they believe that a woman makes her decisions based on some inexplicable feelings, based on an inner intuition.
But research shows that women rely on data and analysis as men, if not more than them. In a sample of 32 studies that looked at how men and women think about a problem or make a decision, 12 studies found that women adopted an analytical approach more often than Men, which means that women systematically turn to data, while men were more likely to go with their intuition or intuitive reactions.
For the other 20 studies, they found no difference between men’s and women’s thinking. Not one study found that women tended to be more intuitive in their decision-making styles.
Women are decision makers
Houston says there is growing evidence that when women occupy multiple leadership roles, they make smarter decisions. The Peterson Institute analyzed the profits of 21,980 companies around the world and found that companies in which women hold 30% of top leadership positions earned 15% more, on average, than companies without women on their boards.