Thinking On Your Feet – 7 Breaths To Make a Decision ?

2 days to go now before the Aichi Triennale opens in Nagoya to the public and only 1 day before the preview.

I am back in Japan waiting.

All the decisions have been made now for the film.
Trying to decide in the edit what really matters for the work now, at this stage which way to go, which way to act and now this moment and then this moment. Not a unique challenge I realise but it’s important to us.

It’s in Japanese and English. No subtitles just voice and pictures. We hope it goes down well.

I feel I spend a lot of time honing practises, trying to make better decisions, quicker, in some areas of my life and in others, I hardly spend any effort at all. As I write this it seems strange to admit it but I know it’s true.

Some people have meetings and work standing up, I like this, thinking on your feet approach, although it’s very hard to persuade others to try it out. Walter Murch editor of Apocolypse Now and the Godfather trilogy stands up to edit, to stay a bit freer, more agile in his thinking. `

I once read in a book about the samurai, that in the words of the ancients:

“One should make his decisions within the space of seven breaths. If discrimination is long, it will spoil. When matters are done leisurely, seven out of ten will turn out badly. A warrior is a person who does things quickly.”

Sometimes I try this, I like this, it conversely slows me down and makes me focus, and seven breaths can seem like a very long time, or certainly enough time often. I’m not promoting haste over valuable consideration, I’m not suggesting fools rushing in where angels fear to tread. But it’s just a thought.

On the other hand research has sometimes shown that boards and panels have decided which nuclear weapon to buy in a few minutes and taken hours to decide which tables and chairs to buy. No one solution fits all, no two situations the same and when it comes down to it, it seems to depend on something else, or usually whole combinations of things. Nothing surprising here I realise but what I came across recently struck me.

And one more thing – the brain has already decided before we physically react seconds earlier. And what can we do about this as we develop, as we make our decisions?

FacebookTwitter Share

Post a comment

You may use the following HTML:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>