Let's face it, making decisions can be scary. What you decide today could affect the rest of your life. When you look at it that way, it's easy to see why you're nervous and anxious! Even a seemingly minor decision can send you spiraling if you start to think about all the things that could go wrong.
If you're one of those people who tends to go back and forth between several choices, you're not alone. Depending on the decision, a number of possibilities may look good. Unfortunately, when you're dealing with decisions related to things like money, career, business opportunities, and personal relationships, the right choice isn't always crystal clear. There usually isn't an option that stands up and yells, "Hey! Over here! Pick me!"
Fortunately, though, making wise decisions doesn't have to be hard! In fact, all you have to do is learn how to properly weigh the pros and cons of each option. And since that can be harder than it sounds, I've come up with a 3-step process to help you do it:
1. Think about what you stand to gain.
This needs to be done first because if the rewards are big enough, you might be willing to take a bigger risk to get them. Or, on the other hand, if a particular option doesn't come with very many rewards, you may decide to eliminate it altogether. Just like that, you've narrowed down your choices and gotten one step closer to your decision!
2. Think about what you stand to lose.
It's never fun to sit down and think about all the things that could go wrong. However, if you're going to make an educated decision, you have to take the good with the bad. It's better to think about the potential negative outcomes now than to get an unpleasant surprise later!
But just because a particular option comes with the possibility of big losses doesn't necessarily mean you have to eliminate it forever. Figure out if your odds will improve over time - and if you have time to delay making a decision while they do.
3. Think about the very worst thing that could happen.
Confront it in your mind, and ask yourself if you're willing to accept it. Yes, this means adopting a very negative mindset (at least temporarily!), but it's a great way to see your situation clearly. If you know you could never accept the consequences of a certain option, then you know it's the wrong decision to make! Or, if you realize that the consequences aren't all that scary, you'll know this option deserves some serious consideration.
But what if all of your potential choices come with similar rewards and consequences?
If you've given each option careful thought and one still doesn't seem head and shoulders above the rest, go with your gut. It'll tell you which one you feel strongest about!
One final point to remember - there's no such thing as a "bad decision". Sure, you might make a decision that comes with more consequences than you'd have liked, but you'll also learn from it. That way, the next time you have to make an important decision, you'll be able to use that learning experience to your advantage. In the end, all that knowledge will make you wiser so future decisions aren't all that scary!
Here's a tip:
Once you're clear about what's truly important to you (not what you think should be important to you based on what other people think is important or want you to think is important) and what you really want in life (not what you think you should want based on what other people want or have or what other people want you to want or have) decision making becomes downright simple.
Because then everything pretty much becomes either constructive or destructive of your desired end and, as Wallace D. Wattles wrote in the preface to the articles in his Lessons in Constructive Science series:
"To learn how to make every thought and action constructive, is to master the secret of all attainment."
So, if you're one of those for whom decision making is a constant struggle, my advice is to start by making these two decisions:
- What's truly important to you.
- What you really want next in your life.
Get those two decisions made and all the rest will fall into place rather nicely.
Need help determining what's truly important to you and what you really want next in your life? My Wallace D. Wattles Quick Start Guide and my Wallace D. Wattles Advanced Vision Guide, in that order, will take you by the hand and guide you through the process. Click or tap the links below to get your copies today.
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May you and your loved ones have the very best of holidays and a healthy, wealthy, successful, and happy New Year!