Co-authored by Dr Bev McLagan (The Burnout Queens)
You know when someone tells you something that you need to hear but might hurt your feelings? Well that is what we are going to do here. Telling yourself that you are lousy at making decisions, or you can't make decisions, is just another way of avoiding, putting-off and getting yourself very, very stuck. It's time for you to face-up to decisions because sticking your neck out and making a decision increases the odds of getting what you want, and we want you to get what you want. (So,can we still be friends?)
We frequently hear, 'I can't make decisions' or 'I'm not good at decisions'. What this really means is, 'I'm uncomfortable with decisions, they make me nervous, anxious or even fearful'. We don't want to make the wrong decision and because of the way we have been raised we have come to believe that anything short of perfect is simply wrong!
Come to think of it we have been raised and trained to take decisions very very seriously. We were told, "If you make the wrong decision the sky is going to fall!" Oh, ok, not in so many words, it was probably more subtle, more like...
• Well if you are sure that's the right decision for you?
• It's not what I would do, but it's your life dear!
• If that's the way you want to do it...
• I guess you know what you are doing
• Are you absolutely sure this is what you want?
No wonder we become decision-shy. Personally, I would have preferred to hear, "Hey that's the wrong decision!" At least I could have asked "Why?" or pouted or flounced to my room in a grand gesture!
Problem is, with these messages we actually start believing that a 'perfect' decision exists somewhere. Well, news flash there is no such thing as a 'right' or 'wrong' decision. And there is definitely no such thing as a 'perfect' decision.
Instead of right or wrong (we won't even breathe the word 'perfect') we need to aim for making the 'best-fit' decision we can at the time because all decisions depend on their circumstances. If for some reason your decision doesn't turn out to be what you thought it would or what you wanted or needed, just make another decision.
(We'll pause for a moment here while those of you who fell off your chairs in shock regain your decorum!)
Yes, you heard us right...just make another decision, a different one. Well, for those of us raised in the school of perfect decisions, this is new territory! We'll go further than that, it's a new solar system! Ok, go slow and read the next 3 lines, breathe deeply as you do, it could be a shock to your system!
Make a decision...change your mind...make another decision.
Make a decision...gain new info...make a different decision.
Make a decision...want something different...make a new decision
No-fault decision making(certainly not your fault) keeps you moving right along, closer and closer to where you dream of being.
Everybody can make decisions! Yes, even you! If you couldn't then you would still be lying in bed wearing your Sleeping Beauty pyjamas! This is a great opportunity to stop telling yourself that there is something you can't do well or do at all! (Cross that off your list!)
From the moment you open your eyes in the morning till you hit the pillow at night you make decisions whether or not you want to own them. We know decisions can be nerve-wracking, so don't expect to be Ms Cool with every decision. You may still get queasy about making a decision but the more you believe in the 'no-fault principle', decisions will get easier and you will gain confidence in your decision making prowess!
Of course, it is perfectly reasonable to pause and ponder when a decision is needed. It's like stopping at the fork in the road before turning left or right. That's cool. Time to consider, think, feel and listen to your gut or intuition. But don't you dare lie to yourself about NOT making a decision. You are deciding to not decide, it's a 'no-decision decision' which is a perfectly legitimate decision, but a decision nonetheless.
We have to own them all: deciding for, deciding against,
and deciding not to decide.
Here's One Great Tip!
Take your clue from flipping a coin. First flip didn't come out the way you wanted? Going for the 'best 2 out of 3'? Probably means you know what decision you want. Most of us flip the coin till it comes out the way we want. Cut to the chase. Trust yourself. You know.
Darlings forget right or wrong, and definitely forget perfect! Instead aim to make wise decisions. We know you can be absolutely great at doing that. How do we know that, well being highly sensitive, perceptive and creative means you make unique decisions, maybe even ones that others don't necessarily understand, but by the time you reach your decision it will have your style stamped all over it.
Now that's what makes a decision great and one you want to own...your style!
Love and support, The Burnout Queens xx