Decisions, decisions. They can be so hard. I mean, which decision is "right?!"
What choice is best for me? What choice is going to be best for everyone involved? Is this choice bad? Is this choice "wrong?" Is this choice selfish? Seriously, it can be so confusing and overwhelming, especially when our decisions involve big change and impact other people.
The reality is that being human requires us to make decisions. Making no decision is a decision. I've been at points of my life where I've completely stalled because I didn't know what "the right thing to do" was. (I'm sure you can relate.) Taking time to think things through is one thing, although sitting in the grey for too long can create it's own set of issues. There's no escaping making decisions for our lives, so here are some thoughts on how to feel more confident about the decisions that are currently requesting your attention.
1. Consider the Opinion of a Legit Source
When you're on the fence about a choice, it can be beneficial to turn to a legit source who has knowing and opinions that you value. When you're contemplating a decision and someone that you respect has relevant experiences to share, keep your ears open. Want to be a doctor? Talk to a practicing physician that you enjoy who has concrete advice. Want to travel somewhere interesting? Seek out conversations with like minded adventurers who travel to destinations that excite you. Be mindful that these are outside opinions, however, when opinions come from a trusted and valued source, I considered that to be GOLD.
2. Tap Into Your Core Values
What you value acts as a compass toward making decisions that align with who you are and what you stand for. Think of each of your core values as guiding lights; lighting the path before you in the direction that's uniquely "right" for you. When you're clear about what's important to you, you'll make decisions with more ease.
Defining core values helps you get in tune with who you are and what you enjoy. Be aware that your preferences will change as you continue to grow and expand. What you once enjoyed can change over time. Sometimes it's just a habit that keeps us doing what we have always done, whether we still gain pleasure from it or not. With that said, it can be beneficial to check in with who and where you are in your life now in order to make more updated choices that honor the present you.
3. Sit on It
Some decisions require you to take a step back and get quiet in order to listen for what the right thing to do is. Allow yourself time to sit with your choices. Be mindful of external forces pushing you to make a decision before you're ready to make one. I understand that some decisions do have and need a timeline, but make sure you have some empty space so you can hear yourself without interference from the outside.
4. Feel it Out
Feel about the decisions that lay before you. That might sound weird, let me further explain.
How you feel about your life and the experiences, opportunities and people in it is huge. Sometimes you can't sum up how you feel in words, although how you feel about something never fails. The tricky part is matching how you feel with what you decide to do. It's like the feeling that surfaces when you're literally walking in the wrong direction, it just doesn't feel right. Get to know that feeling so you can identify it and act on it.
How can you make good decisions if you're not aware of how you feel? By slowing down and checking in more frequently with yourself you can, overtime, become more in tune with how you feel about things vs. how you think about things. This will help you make better choices.
5. Take the Pressure Off
A quote that I always think about when I make major choices in my life is a John Burroughs quote, "Leap and the net will appear." Meaning, make a move and something will come in to support you and help direct you further. This really is how it works in life.
This quote helps me "dumb down" decision making. It takes my view on choices from a level 9 to a level 3 in scary factor. It helps me remember that the chances of me ruining my life in a single choice is a pretty extreme perspective that's going to keep me in fear and stagnant, which is scary in itself.
Take a breath, get grounded and make the best decision that you know to make in the moment that an answer is being requested. That's the best any of us can do.
Many decisions, especially major ones, come into existence because of the small choices that we're making along the way. For example, usually multiple different choices and events lead to the decision to either leave or stay in a established relationship. It's more rare to have one single event happen that changes everything.
Also, remember that most everything is temporary in life. We're going to make decisions that lead to something we don't necessarily want or like, that's part of living. However, perhaps we have to go down those mirky roads in order to get to an elevated place within ourselves and our lives. Trust this.
Hopefully, these tips spoke to you and can help you navigate your way with more confidence. Trust that when you make a move, something or someone other than you will swoop in to support you or help you get clear on which direction to go in. Although, you have to start down the path by making a choice, which will then set the flow of life in motion. Trust that the flow of life will help you navigate your way from there.
Now, get after it and make a move.....
* The above image was taken by photographer, Renata Amazonas.