It is in your moments of decision that your destiny is shaped.
One of the greatest lessons I learned in life was that there is little use in spending too much time when decisions need to be made. Too many of us spend so much time agonizing over the choices we must make that we flounder and often miss opportunity.
I recently read an article written by Camilla Hallstrom that provides tips on how to avoid overthinking when a decision must be made. Below are excerpts from her article that I think have merit. If you suffer from decision making snags this can be the cure you are looking for.
Ways to Stop Overthinking and Master Decisiveness
Approach decisions in a different way
Why do you overthink things? Chances are that you’re afraid of making the wrong decision. You’re afraid that you’ll be seen as a failure or that you’ll have to start from scratch after you’ve invested a lot of time and effort into something. This keeps you from making any decision at all.
But what if you could change your thought process? What if you would look at your decision-making as part of a journey, instead of focusing on the end goal? What this means is that you approach your decisions with curiosity and creativity rather than focusing on what you should achieve. See the possibility to choose as an opportunity to find out new things about yourself and to use your smarts to find creative solutions along the way.
Put things into perspective
When you suffer from analysis paralysis, every little decision feels life-altering. While there are decisions that you need to think about more thoroughly, most of the decisions that you make throughout the day are small and insignificant. To determine whether a decision is important or insignificant, label it according to the following questions:
Will the outcome affect anything in your life in a big way (e.g. your income, your life partner, and so forth)? How will the outcome of the decision impact your life a year from now? What’s the worst thing that could happen?
If the outcome does have a big impact on your life even a year from now and if there are worst case scenarios you want to avoid, sit down and think about the decision. But if the outcome is insignificant, you shouldn’t spend much time thinking about it. After all, that just steals away energy from more important decisions. To stop overthinking, make it as frictionless and easy as possible to make small and meaningless decisions. For example, choose what you’ll wear the day before and decide what you’ll eat for dinner every day of the week in advance.
Be kind to yourself
You probably have a perfectionist living inside of you. And that perfectionist is keeping you from making decisions. You abstain from moving forward because ultimately, your inner perfectionist is criticizing everything you do. To overcome your perfectionistic self, set a clear time limit to your decision. Instead of prolonging the decision (and ultimately, failing to make up your mind), promise yourself to make a decision when the time is up. And keep in mind that “done is better than perfect.”
You need to start trusting yourself. Trust yourself that you can achieve what you set out to do and that you’re capable of making the right decision. Ultimately, it will become easier and easier to make decisions.
In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.
A farmer was driving along the road with a load of fertilizer. A little boy, playing in front of his house, saw him and called, “What’ve you got in your truck?” “Fertilizer,” the farmer replied. “What are you going to do with it?” asked the little boy. “Put it on strawberries,” answered the farmer. “You ought to live here,” the little boy advised him. “We put sugar and cream on ours.”
Everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was.
Richard L Evans
A man walks into a dentist’s office and says, “Excuse me, can you help me. I think I’m a moth.”
Dentist: “You don’t need a dentist. You need a psychiatrist.”
Man: “Yes, I know.”
Dentist: “So why did you come in here?”
Man: “The light was on.”
“What a wonderful life I’ve had! I only wish I’d realized it sooner.”
Now that they are retired, my mother and father are discussing all aspects of their future. “What will you do if I die before you do?” Dad asked Mom.
After some thought, she said that she’d probably look for a house-sharing situation with three other single or widowed women who might be a little younger than herself, since she is so active for her age.
Then Mom asked Dad, “What will you do if I die first?”
He replied, “Probably the same thing.”
“They have luggage stores in airports. Who forgets their suitcase? Have you ever seen a guy with an armload of shirts going, ‘Hurray, a suitcase?”
I was getting into my car when I noticed a dent. On the windshield was a note and a phone number from the driver. “I feel terrible,” the woman apologized when I called. “I hit your car as I was pulling into the next parking spot.”
“Please don’t worry,” I said to her. “I’m sure our insurance companies will take care of everything.”
“Thank you for your understanding,” she said. “You’re so much nicer than the man I hit on my way out.”
Ate salad for dinner! Mostly croutons & tomatoes. Really just one big, round crouton covered with tomato sauce. And cheese. FINE, it was a pizza. I ate a pizza.
Two men meet in the heart of the African Savannah.
Says one, “I’m here to commune with nature in the raw, to contemplate the eternal verities and to widen my horizons. And you, sir?”
The second man sighs deeply. “I came because my daughter has begun violin lessons.”
She said: Inside me lives a skinny woman crying to get out. But I can usually shut her up with cookies.
My sister has the courage, but not always the skills, to tackle any home repair project.
For example, in her garage are pieces of a lawnmower she once tried to fix. So I wasn’t surprised the day my other sister, Pam, and I found our sister attacking her vacuum cleaner with a screwdriver.
“I can’t get this thing to cooperate,” she explained when she saw us.
Pam suggested, “Why don’t you drag it out to the garage and show it the lawnmower?”
“The hardest thing about the road not taken is that you never know where it might have led.”
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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