And a few reasons why you are brilliant at it already!
I’ve just retaken a personality test that I did some months ago. Not to worry, I am still firmly set in the space of introversion:)
A key takeaway for me from the results of this current test is that my decision-making has improved.
But before I give you this three-step process, I want to start by telling you why you are already an awesome decision-maker.
- Micro Decisions
You start making conscious decisions the moment you open your eyes in the morning.
Each micro decision you make gets you through your day. Making your first cup of coffee; your thoughts and actions while you are getting ready for work; getting into your car; doing the shopping; dropping the kids off at school; doing your incredible work.
These are all micro-decisions, and we often forget that they are decisions because they have become part-and-parcel of your daily process.
So, take some time today to stop.
Stop – what are you thinking? How are you feeling? Are you worried? Concerned? Happy? Comfortable?
Stop and observe.
2. Your decisions have shaped who you are
Take a look at your life up to this point.
Yes, there might very well be low points and things that you might regret or feel sorry or sad about.
However, when you position yourself into a space of gratitude for everything that has come about – whether you flourished or learnt a lesson, your decisions have carved out your life.
Your life is a reflection of you.
This might be a sobering thought for some of us. If so, your decisions that you make today then can be an epic way to repurpose your intentions and move you into a space where you are able to flourish.
What are you going to decide to do today?
3. There are no good or bad decisions
I used this word to discuss a past decision that I had made. My friend lovingly reminded me that regret has no place in our past decisions.
Since past decisions cannot be undone, they must be seen as points along a journey. A journey that has brought you here to this place.
If that is a sobering thought and you are not altogether comfortable with your space at this moment, then another decision – one based on learning from that regret, can make every difference to your onward journey.
We make decisions every second of the day.
What are you going to decide to do today?
I made a decision that changed my life
I decided to go on pilgrimage and walk the Camino de Santiago.
When I started walking, I didn’t realise that I was carrying with me such immense grief. I was aware that my mood affected my life and my relationships, but I had never considered that I was suffering grief.
It seems so obvious to me now.
My decision to walk the Camino Frances saved my life. It allowed me to re-discover my courage and to face the loss of my brother, my grandparents, my best friend and my parents.
The beautiful gift of time that I had given myself gave me space to consider my own goals and my own dreams, and it changed my thought around how I was going to live the rest of my life.
My decision to go on pilgrimage was the first decision of many that have now shaped who I am.
We have to decide who we are, and what our primary purpose is, in order to thrive, and not only survive.
What are you going to decided to do today?
Now onto what has improved my decision-making skills.
Since I am an introvert and I use both judging and sensing to make my decisions. This might be somewhat different for you.
However, since I have taken to using my own coaching tools and techniques that I have learned on myself in addition to my clients, I believe that my thought process has developed because of my increased overall confidence.
This three-step process is ideal when you are facing challenging situations, and a decision must be made.
- Define the challenge
By this, I suggest that you really give it a good assessment.
- What are the facts;
- What has worked before and can you apply this positive outcome;
- What hasn’t worked;
- Who can you count on to help you – consider your outer resources;
- How can you overcome this yourself – consider your inner resources;
- Who do you know that has faced a similar challenge to support you through this moment.
Once you have clearly assessed what needs to be done, and who can help you you are 80% of the way to making a well-formed decision.
2. Consider all possibilities
As human beings when we are faced with difficult decisions as a result of situations or circumstances we often resort to the worst-case scenario.
This is absolutely great!
Using our intuition and considering the facts together, we are energised towards finding a workable solution and then making well-formed decisions around the challenge.
Considering all possibilities, even the nasty ones, allows you to make short-term and actionable decisions to get you moving forward. That forward movement will empower you through those challenges even when, at the outset, they seem insurmountable.
3. Consider the consequences
My go-to question to myself, when I am at this point is:
“What’s the worst that will happen?” That worst-case scenario aspect of decision making.
I often find myself writing up a “pros vs cons” list. It’s funny how my “pros” are always longer.
It’s because, I believe, that we know intuitively what to do, it is only our limiting beliefs that often get in our way.
It’s very helpful to consider the consequences from both angles:
- What will happen if I don’t make this decision?
- What will happen if I do make this decision?
Ask yourself how will this decision, whether you make it or not, impact your loved ones. Those people who count on you.
What are you deciding to do today?
If there are no challenges you are being faced with today, observe your thinking and contemplate this statement:
Thoughts are real forces.
This is the first law of the mind, as described by John Kehoe.
If you believe that thoughts are real forces, what are your thoughts about?
If you need to change them are you deciding today to be happier, more fulfilled, more successful, more purpose-driven, or will you decide that the status quo is ok for you right now.
Either way, there is no right or wrong decision, as long as you remember that every decision shapes our lives.
Our lives are a reflection of ourselves.
What are you deciding today?
Photo by Engin Akyurt from Pexels