No matter how much you try, you will never get answers to all of your questions. So if your plan is to get as full a story so that you can have all the relevant facts before you decide, be prepared that it’s not always possible.
So what are you to do when faced with a situation where you need to decide and yet do not have all the information you consider relevant?
Simply, you do the best you can to avail yourself of what you can and move ahead. This is why it is critical that you run your life on the belief that you need to be decisive. There’s a price to be paid for indecision… and you will pay that price.
If you cannot predict all the possibilities, you hedge your bets and go for it.
Often, you need to act first and then recalibrate which is simply another way of saying that you fail yourself forward.
How do you become decisive?
1. When faced with a decision, make one. Sometimes, it will be to file this away for two days while you ponder on the issues. Other times, it will be to come clean and acknowledge what you know you want to decide anyway and then go with that.
2. You take a look around and see what other information you feel is relevant to your making a decision. See how you can extract more information. This might involve a call you need to make, some research you need to do, some notes you need to take to remember key points. The thing is to shore your position up, strengthen yourself in the decision you will make. If it’s a negotiation, capture these points and send them across as a record of what’s transpired. If it involves choosing between A and B, make a list of pros and cons. Even if you don’t rely on the list, the entire process can shed light on where your mind is at and what you truly feel.
3. Tell someone about it. The process of talking about it, explaining the issues and even defending your position will help you decide. Listen to yourself for clues.
4. Write it down. Sometimes, when you have to put pen to paper, it can help crystalise what you need to do.
5. Declutter. Often, this, in itself, is a huge help. Decluttering here is not just about your physical space, it could be your mental space.
Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.
– David Allen, creator of Getting Things Done.
When you take some time to attend to the things that are niggling away at you, it’s like a huge weight is lifted. And that process can give you the white space you need to properly assess what you need to make a decision on.
6. Accept that you wont and don’t have all the answers.
Understand that you have the right to do-over. And if that’s the case, what’s so scary about deciding now?
7. And the scariest ever – decisions will be made, no matter what.
If you fail to see the power of choice before you, if you decide that you can wait for a period of time that you choose not to define, if nothing has prompted you to believe that your time for deciding is over, then perhaps this, of all things, may move you : decisions get made all the time, whether you realise it or not.
Some consciously, some unconsciously. To truly feel in control, vibrant and proactive, you want to be making those decisions for yourself. Not sliding into them or being left with a decision because the other options have been exhausted. Hard as it may be to accept, if you don’t make a decision, one will be made for you. At some point, by someone or something, by default, by omission.
Who does not want to be in the driver’s seat of their own life? So, make the decision today to be decisive. Watch the power of that choice come into your life and change it for the better.