Do you ever find yourself paralyzed when it comes to making a big decision? The fear of making the wrong choice can leave you feeling stuck and unable to move forward. It’s emotionally and mentally exhausting to stay in limbo. But here’s a little secret I want to share with you: making decisions, no matter how big or small, is key to creating a happier and more fulfilling life.
Decisions are how you shape everything in your life – both the things you desire and the things you don’t. In fact, on average, we make around 35,000 decisions each day. From simple choices like hitting the snooze button or selecting an outfit, to more significant ones like deciding whether to workout or not or what to have for dinner. Though these may seem insignificant in the grand scheme of things, they do have an impact. And when faced with a major decision, it can feel as if it has the power to paralyze us.
As humans, we tend to gravitate towards what we know and are comfortable with, rather than embracing change. The fear of making the wrong decision can be daunting. So, how can you overcome decision fatigue and make those important choices that will lead to a more fulfilling life? Keep reading, because I’m about to share some useful tips with you!
STEPS FOR MAKING A BIG DECISION
1. Set a Deadline for your Decision.
You may think taking your time to make a decision is best practice, but it’s a myth. Decisions are made in an instant. Literally in a second. If you feel you need to take more time to research and weigh all your options, you are likely just delaying the process + stalling. Pick a time when you want to have your decision made and stick with it.
2. Create a list of all the options available.
We often think big decisions are just a “yes” or “no” or “this way” or “that way”. But oftentimes, there are multiple options available that you might not have even thought about at first, so create a list of all the possible decisions you could make.
For example, maybe you are deciding whether or not to sign up for a certification program in the spring, an alternative option besides just “yes” or “no” may be “yes, but I will sign up for fall instead so I have more time to set aside money.”
3. Now answer some questions that will help you dig deeper with each decision option you listed.
- What is the worst-case scenario with all the options?
- What is the best-case scenario with all the options? (We often only think of the worst case and forget to think about the best case!)
- What is the most realistic scenario for each of the options?
- Which option is most in alignment with your long-term goals?
- If all options worked out, which one would get you closer to the life you want for your future self?
- Ask your future self, what would she do.
- Are you making the decision out of fear or out of courage? (We have to do scary things to move forward but if you are making the decision based on fear vs based on doing something courageous, then it might not be the best option).
- If you don’t make a decision, what will happen?
- If you DID know the answer, what would it be?
- Let’s flip a coin. Heads is decision A, Tails is decision B. What do you want the coin to say?
- What if failure wasn’t an option? You will either be winning or learning. Would you still make the decision?
4. Now make a decision and don’t look back.
You are done! You did it! Honor yourself + your choice. Accept that there is no “perfect” decision and any decision may have its uncomfortable moments, but you have made a decision. There is no wrong or right decision. Only a decision made to propel you forward (instead of leaving you stagnant + stuck).
5. Take action!
You aren’t fully committed to a decision until you start taking action forward! That is when your decision becomes a reality. Make the call. Hit submit. Get the time blocked on your calendar.
6. Reflect on your decision after you’ve taken action.
So often we make a decision and we don’t really take time to review it. Or we take a tiny step forward and then doubt sets in and we fear whether we made the right decision. Don’t backtrack or continue to flip back & forth. Take BIG action so you can gain some valuable information based on your decision. Now that you have more information and a path started, ask yourself, Is this leading you closer to your goals? Do you feel good about it now that you’ve taken action? Sometimes you may realize after a decision, that the path needs to be altered a bit. You don’t need to stick to the course just because you made the big decision already. Life is like a choose-your-own-adventure. You make a decision and it leads you to the next scenario but you would have never gotten there if you didn’t make the initial decision.
TIPS TO MINIMIZE FUTURE DECISION FATIGUE
1. Practice Making decisions.
The ability to make big decisions with ease is not something you are born with, but rather it’s a skill set developed over time. The more you continue to make decisions with your life the easier it will become with time. The more you make decisions with confidence, the more you will live a life of intention that feels satisfying + fulfilling. Even if you are starting with smaller decisions, it will have a domino effect on your life.
2. Don’t indulge in “I don’t know”.
We say we don’t know because it’s the easy way out. We don’t have to make a decision. We don’t have to activate the prefrontal lobe of the brain for the deep-thinking work. I promise you though, you DO know what you want to do, but you are afraid. It’s a matter of self-trust. And if you start doing tip #1 (practicing making decisions), you will start building that self-trust muscle and it will feel good!
3. There are no right or wrong decisions.
There is just “A” decision that moves you forward instead of keeping you stuck. I truly believe that what is meant to be will ALWAYS find a way. If you trust your gut, you will choose the decision that is meant for you in that moment. You can’t go back in time and do a “do-over”, so don’t even let that be something that you waste your time on. If you focus less on the problems in life and more on the solutions to each hurdle that may come your way after a decision has been made, you will live the life of purpose + intention that you desire.
So on a final note, when it comes to making big decisions, don’t let yourself stall because of fear. Make the decision + make it fast! The more you practice the stronger your “decision-making” muscle will get + it will become easier. You will free up time in your life and likely reach your goals a helluva lot quicker!
Are you interested in learning more about getting out of decision fatigue so you can actually make your dreams happen?
Sign up for a FREE phone consultation with me, your personal certified life coach, and we will chat more about how 1:1 coaching will help you get out of indecision and into your dream life.
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