“A wise man makes his own decisions, an ignorant one follows the public opinion.” ~ Chinese Proverb
What could be so hard about making decisions? I hope you are one of those rare people who are able to make quick and sound decisions all the time. This ability, I believe, is almost as unique as having a gift for playing a musical instrument or one for creating sculptures.
The rest of us struggle with making decisions for many reasons. We are afraid we might hurt others. We think too much about every consequence of every little decision. We cannot fully understand all of the risks and rewards. We are too busy and feel we need to postpone decisions to when we have more time. We have too many decisions to make and cannot focus on them one at a time. We feel someone else should make the decision. We believe we cannot implement the decision even if we make one. We are penalized for making decisions instead of being rewarded. You get my point….
It is very important to understand what is standing in your way of making a decision. This will help you see the problem very clearly; and usually clarity will make the best decision obvious. For example, are you afraid that your decision will be received negatively? Is your decision going to harm anyone in any way? You should also try to understand the extent of incompleteness of information. What are the missing data points that would make it very easy for you to make the decision one way or another? What questions would others ask if you had to justify your decision? Are you comfortable that a later discovery will not cause you any regrets? There are many other points, but one final important requirement is to understand your personal screens before you make important decisions. If you were ten years old, what would you have done? What if you were Jesus, or your mother, how would you decide? Do you have a particular bias in any direction that is affecting your decision? If you saw an article about your bias in a newspaper, would you be proud? One of the most important criteria for me is to always make decisions that I would never regret.
The process of decision making is unique for every person, but I hope that whatever your process is, it works for you flawlessly and you are able to make decisions and are able to move forward. Since time is our absolutely most valuable asset, do not waste it, decide and proceed.