Always try to give yourself options and a back-up plan. If the white is tight on the side cushion near the baulk-line, this would be classed as a 'dead ball' as the white is no use to you here. If you have control of the red, then go after the white. Immediately aim to bring the red to the white, play a cannon to develop the white and get the balls into a position from which you can score off both. If you now wish to play a sequence of losers of the red, that is fine because at least if it goes wrong you have the white as a backup, in effect another 'life'. In general, never aim to score with one object ball when the other is out of position or dead; if you make one mistake, you will break down.