Saturday, October 25, 2008

Becoming Decisive - Learning to Make the Hard Decisions

Whenever I read a post on a blog that really inspires me, I bookmark the page in a special folder I have for just such occasions. I like to go back through them sometimes to re-read and become re-inspired.

One of the ones I liked last month was from the Wisdom Journal called Steps to Develop Decisiveness. I don't actually remember how I even stumbled across this one, all I know is I made sure to store it away for later.

In some ways I am a very decisive person. I tend to go with gut instinct, (tempered with a bit of past experience, of course.) I will think things through, weigh all my options, but then once I make a decision I move on it right away - 100% confident in my choice. I'm not always right, naturally, but I always think I am! There are times though when it is really hard for me to make decisions, and that is why this article got me to thinking.

The Wisdom Journal post suggests(it is really good, but not very long - go read it.) that you take a moment and ask yourself what prevents you from making decisions. My two stumbling blocks are:

  • I don't have enough information
  • The decision seems too big
I wrote, not long ago, about tackling projects I hate. This lack of info and enormous size problem are pretty much the same two things that prevent me from wanting to do certain things around the house too. Of the two, the worse one is lack of information. How can I make a decision about something if I don't feel like I have all the information? That's why I am such a big fan of experiments - trying something out so it gives you the information you need. (I've been like this with my CFL experiment - I tried a few, had success, tried a few more.) When it comes to this, I have to learn to be more comfortable seeking information out - just by doing some research online, reading a book, calling a family member or a friend. I know these techniques, but occasionally I get so wound up in a problem I forget that there are simple solutions to get me out of it.

Other times problems seem insurmountable. I remember when I first realized that I would end up having to take the mortgage and that I was going to be $900 short a month. My stomach just dropped. For several weeks I put off making any decisions because the whole thing seemed just too big. However, once I was able to break the problem down into smaller pieces by generating The List (my plan for how to raise income and cut costs,) suddenly the decisions weren't so hard - I could see the whole scope of the problem.

Though I certainly don't miss my ex, I occasionally miss having someone to talk about decisions with. (Friends aren't quite the same because they aren't invested in the same way.) On the other hand, there is also a wonderful liberating feeling knowing it is all up to me. And what's more - I can do this!

Photo by: Water Lemon

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