I work with people who are stuck in their career because they don’t want to make the decision to move on (even though they know it is the right one) and end up being stuck in a rat wheel, trying to make the most of a life that is not fulfilling.

They don’t know what they want from their life (no one teaches that at school so how could they!!) and they are scared of changing, of throwing away years of experience to do something different or to just be themselves.

Making a decision is the point where change happens.

What is considered an efficient decision?

A decision is a risk-taking judgment (“Oh, risk, I’m not sure I’m interested now, I’d rather stay safe” – Wait, was that your inner critic warning you against change? 😉)

There is usually a lengthy process involved in making a big decision, have a look at this article from Harvard Business Review from 1967 on The Effective Decision.

This was mainly based on hard facts, no room for emotions and listening to your gut feeling…

There are two extreme types of decision-making people 👇🏼

  1. The Spontaneous: Looks at the facts very briefly and makes a decision quickly on what they think is right.
  2. The Procrastinator: Takes months to decide what colour of shirt to buy. Considers every past experience, any future possibilities, advise of her friends, articles written on the topic. Finally ends up not buying anything as it’s too tiring!

Which type are you?

A lot of us are type 2 because of:

  • Fear:
    • of failing as they may have done before
    • of change as they are not so bad here after all
  • Uncertainty:
    • about what they want – no clear vision of where we are headed
    • about what’s truly important for us – our values
  • We don’t trust our gut, sometimes the best decision is the riskiest, but it’s also the most exciting one

We all have a certain number of decisions to make during a day

…(35,000, to be precise, and 226 related to food only according to Cornell University Researchers!!) so if we can reduce that amount by eating the same thing and wearing the same clothes every day (like Mark Zuckerberg with his grey shirts and Steve Jobs with his jeans and black jumper) then you leave more room in your mind to make decisions on the more important stuff. And, if successful people do it, why wouldn’t you?

What is the right decision?

Making a decision is tough

The truth is, there is no right or wrong decision because until you try you won’t know if the decision was good or bad.

Of course, the more analytical among you will tell me that there are statistics that help predict the outcome based on previous experience and existence of a pattern, but can we really predict the future?

Life will throw things at us that statistics have not planned. That’s just the way it is, and it’s also part of a bigger topic which is accepting that we have no control over anything (but we’ll address that another time! )

The only way to know what will happen is to travel in the future and see what happens.

If you’ve not seen the movie Sliding Doors – on this topic and I highly recommend it (not only because I’m a fan of Gwyneth Paltrow 😉), and see for yourself how a decision can change your life.

We can die tomorrow, crushed under a bus, even though our plan was the best one.

So, what if you were going to die tomorrow?

Would you care about the fear that is stopping you from making the most exciting decision?

Would you wait for weeks before making a decision?

Let me ask you this: on your deathbed, will you think of all the mistakes you have made or will you regret not taking more risks?

How to make a decision?

Are you ready to trust your gut, your values and your life plan? If so, make the damn decision and have fun with it – the good and the bad.

All is part of your life experience and you will become a better person for it, whatever the outcome.

DO NOT look back.

Do everything in your power to make this the right decision.

Yes, maybe you will have failures, setbacks as a result of that decision but you will also have invaluable learnings, unexpected experiences and as a result, a different road may open up for you, much better than the initial decision you voted against in the first place.

I’d love to know what’s the decision making process that has worked for you?

Share in the comments below!

If you’d like to get more direction on where you are going and what’s important for you, so you are in a strong position to make a decision, let’s chat as I can help you! 😃