Somebody really smart once said that our lives our made from the choices we make. I believe, good or bad, we are all only one decision away from a completely different life. That means we need to be certain we are making the best decisions possible in our life.
Making decisions is a complex process. It involves weighing various factors and considering the potential consequences of each option. Some decisions are so complex that many people decide not to make them at all. But deciding to not decide IS a decision.
It’s a decision to allow other people or random circumstances to choose your life’s course for you. That hardly ever works out well. So YOU need to decide, even with all the risks that can come with a decision you’re better off deciding than not.
So here are some steps you can follow that are likely to help you make better decisions. They can also remove some of the stress associated with decision making.
- Identify the decision: Start by identifying the decision you need to make. It’s important to be clear about what you want to achieve and why you need to make the decision.
- Gather information: Once you have identified the decision required, gather as much information as you can about the options available to you. This could include research, advice from others, and your own experiences. Sometimes you’ll need to “trust your gut” when making decisions. Know that your “gut” is likely a life experience that you have forgotten but your subconscious mind has not. You almost certainly know more than you realize, trust yourself.
- Evaluate the options: Consider the pros and cons of each option. Think about the potential benefits and risks of each choice, and assess how well each option aligns with your goals. Go deep here, consider the consequences of the consequences of the consequences. Play the “what if” game. What if this happens? What if that happens? Good decision makers are seldom surprised by an outcome of their decisions. That’s because they have considered all the possibilities.
- Make a decision: Based on the information you have gathered and the evaluations you have made, choose the option that best aligns with your goals.
- Take action: Once you have made your decision, take action to implement it. This may involve communicating your decision to others, taking steps to put your plan into action, and monitoring your progress. You may have felt a weight lifted off your shoulders when you made your decision but you need to understand, it’s not a real decision until you act upon it.
- Evaluate the results: After you have taken action, evaluate the results. Assess whether your decision has led to the outcomes you were hoping for, and whether you need to make any adjustments or changes going forward. I like to assume that some adjustments will be needed. Having to make adjustments is not the sign of a bad decision, it is a part of making your initial decision even better.
The better your decisions the better your life will be. You make tons of decisions everyday. Most are made subconsciously. Some of those can have a bigger impact on our lives than we realize but it’s the ones that keep us up at night that really matter. Don’t allow other people or circumstances to make those decisions for you. You are better off making a wrong decision that you can fix rather than surrendering control of your life to someone else’s poor decisions that you can’t fix.
Make your decisions fearlessly. Know full well that you are in control of your life and you’re only one decision away from having exactly the life you want.