Got a tough decision to make? Maybe you’ve been mulling one around all afternoon, making lists of the pro’s and con’s, rating things by priority and even consulting friends, only to continue feeling confused as to how to proceed.
Here’s a few tricks to help you get in touch with what you really want, making the best decision for you.
1. Let go of the ‘shoulds’. Should is a very guilt-heavy word. It is full of shame, burden and negativity. ‘Should’ is taking on someone else’s ideas or expectations as your own. If you feel you ‘should’ do something, ask yourself why? Who said you should? Do you really want to? And if you do really want to, then why haven’t you yet? Many times you’ll find it was never something you wanted to do, but something someone else wanted of you. If that’s the case, let it go. It’s your life.
2. Will it bring me joy? Look at each of your choices. Imagine yourself performing this task or achieving this outcome. Are you happy doing it? Do you like the result? Remember it’s not just the goal that matters, but the journey as well. Can you only be happy with this choice in the end, or will the process itself enrich and bring satisfaction to your life?
3. Decide to do it for a day. There are a few variations on this one, and I love them all! If it’s a big decision, like whether to buy a house, change jobs or have another baby, give yourself 2 days. On the first day, pretend that the answer is yes, and see how it feels to live that day as if you are going ahead with your decision. On day 2, pretend it’s no, then notice which day felt the best.
If it’s a smaller decision try writing your options down on scraps of paper. Folding them so you can’t see what’s inside, randomly write yes or no each slip. As you open them, notice what you feel – relief? Disappointment? Excitement? Listen to your inner dialogue – are you happy and in agreement, or do you hear yourself arguing and rationalizing why you should go against the random yes/no answer. Pay attention too, to what you’re hoping for. As you prepare to open a yes, what is your mind slipping toward? What are you secretly hoping it will be? Do the same with the no’s.
This same concept works when you ask a friends’ advice. Do you find yourself feeling good and agreeing with what they’re saying, or do you want to argue and justify the opposite?
Often times our ego’s get in the way, chiding us about what we ought to do, what we should do, what’s expected of us, etc, and we lose the ability to listen to our inner voice – the one that knows our true heart’s desire. These simple suggestions will help you hear that voice more clearly, allowing you to make the best decision for you.
Whatever you choose, I recommend making sure your decisions always comes from a good place. Don’t do something or not do something out of fear, anger, frustration or any negative emotion. Those decisions rarely work out! Let your decisions feel good.
And remember, there is no right or wrong answer, there is only choice. Each choice bears its own consequence, its own fruit or reward. You just have to decide what you want!
I hope this helps! Got any other suggestions for good decision making? What do you feel helps you when it’s hard to decide?