Yes there really is a sickness called “Hurry Up Syndrome”! I knew this disease existed, I was surprised that it had a real scientific name! According to University of Manchester’s Dr. James Reason, this time crunch that we operate under increases the chance that we will make a mistake by 11 times.*
When we are operating with this malady, we tend to make decisions based more on emotion than relying on fact, or on a combination of facts and emotion. Our perspective changes, and our natural cautious checkpoints are crushed. We are focused on completing the task, resolving the uncomfortable or threatening situation, or wanting the offending person to leave us alone! In other words, our amygdala [Amy, as my clients know it] hijacks and takes control of our thinking. Our neo-cortex is not given the opportunity to take over.
EMS pilots are especially susceptible to this … they have a critical care patient they must fly from Point A to Point B. Knowing this is a critical flight, can cause these pilots to take risks they may not have taken otherwise.
Think of how your communication changes when you are experiencing “hurry up syndrome”.
It isn’t what they said, it’s what you think you heard!
*B&CA magazine, October 2008, p. 44