Motivation Monday: Smart Decision Making
Every day we are flooded with situations that demand our decision-making skills. Small decisions, such as what to wear, what to eat, and the words we use when speaking to others, are made alongside larger decisions, like whether to buy a house, get married, or go back to school. These choices – in addition to the thoughts we have, and the actions we have towards ourselves, others, and the world – form the person we are and are becoming. What direction are your choices steering you?
In order to make decisions in your own best interest, you must know what your desired result is. Once you have identified the type of person you want to be and become, you can then evaluate your choices, habits, and activities and determine if they are moving you closer or further away from the desired result.
Thus, step one in making good decisions is knowing who you want to be. But even then, we sometimes find ourselves stuck in the rut of indecision. The following tips may help you climb out of the rut:
- Question yourself differently.
- Will I be happy with this decision in 10 minutes, 10 months, and 10 years from now?
- What is the “wise” thing to do? Oftentimes, you know what the wise thing to do is, but you just don’t want to do it. Use this information: it suggests that you don’t have your best interest in mind. If you don’t, who does?
- What am I waiting for?
- What would I do if I weren’t afraid?
- What information do I need in order to make this decision easier, and what can I do to get that information?
- In 5 years, when I look back at this decision, what will I wish I had done?
- Write down your problem and the potential solutions. List the pros and cons of the solution. The simple act of getting it on paper can oftentimes make the right choice obvious.
- Think AND instead of OR. Oftentimes, we think we have to choose either/or when making a decision. But is there a way you could do BOTH?
- Use the Vanishing Options trick. If all of the options you are currently considering suddenly disappeared, what else could you do?
- As always, take responsibility. Whatever your biggest problem is today will be an even bigger problem next month and next year. Decide to seriously reflect upon the decisions in front of you and then take action in the right direction.