Decisions, decisions …

I absolutely hate making decisions. So much so, that it’s actually something of a joke in the family. But I can agonize for days when I have to make a choice, and the process eventually gains its own momentum and before long occupies a huge part of my reasoning brain! Shopping with me can be a nightmare, although I have one friend who is almost as bad as I am and we can spend hours in the same shop deliberating over which colour dress to buy or whether this top goes better with that skirt, and so on.

Now hubby is the opposite when it comes to making decisions. Mostly, he’ll weigh up the options, then he makes his decision. Snap. Once made, he’s happy with it and tells me he doesn’t give it any further thought. Infuriating. He often quips that it’s a wonder how I ever made the decision to marry him. Then I tell him, truthfully, that it was a no-brainer, and gain a few brownie points in the process 🙂

Weirdly, I’m usually better at the bigger stuff. It’s the smaller stuff that can throw me into turmoil. Over the years, I’ve tried pretty much every decision-making tip in existence. Writing out the pros and cons, sleeping on it, tossing a coin. I’ve even tried using a pendulum, a crystal hung from a thread. The theory goes that if you hold the pendulum and it swings clockwise the answer is yes, if it swings anticlockwise the answer is no. It’s supposed to be a way of accessing what our subconscious already knows and works by sending a signal to our muscles to move the pendulum.

Of course, what drives my inability to make decisions is the fear of making the wrong one and having to live with it. But it’s really not that bad, as even a wrong decision propels us forward and toward a new way of looking at and thinking about things. As Life Coach, Martha Beck says, “when you trade indecision for choices, you’ll be rewarded with either success or education”.

I’m a little better at the whole process since I’ve gotten older, and now I tend to make the majority of decisions using my gut feelings and rely on that sense of lightness that moves over me when a decision is made. I try not to waste precious time worrying over my choices anymore. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe warned “indecision brings its own delays, and days are lost lamenting over lost days”. That’s scary.

How about you? What are your favourite decision-making tips?

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11 responses to “Decisions, decisions …

  1. I wish I had some decision making tips, but trying to pick out tile for a backsplash in our kitchen was about a 6 month endeavor. Then, of course, the tile I picked was discontinued! I will say, though, once I DO make a decision, I’m tenacious. It took me several emails with the manufacturer to find someone who had some leftover tile. (I only needed 29 of them). So I am tile in hand. 🙂

  2. This is a very timely post as Sunday we are moving the bed, table and couch so I’ll be sleeping at the new place that night and right now I go to bed thinking “WHAT DID I DO” and get up thinking “I DON”T WANT TO DO THIS.” To late! Of course this was a huge decision and I’m not sure it was all that difficult to make as it was inevitable. I’m at the time of life when it will be changing either with or without my making a conscious decision.

    I love the two quotes especially Martha Beck’s and will tuck it away to use the next few weeks. For me I can make decisions it’s the after that I have trouble when I start rethinking what I bought or did or didn’t do.

    • Valerie J. Patterson

      Lavada, I hope you are happy in your new digs, and I’m positive you and the family will make loads of great memories there. Will pray for a smooth transition. 😛

    • I think the ‘inevitable’ type decisions always leave us with a “what have I done” feeling, Lavada, but hang on in there. And I agree, the rethinking after a decision is made can be exhausting, but unless we’re really fortunate I think it’s something most of us go through. I hope the first night at your new abode went well and I wish you the very best of happiness there.

  3. Valerie J. Patterson

    I don’t generally have a problem making a decision. I mostly go by instinct or research. I dislike spending too much time on or over-thinking a decision. When I do that, I usually regret my choice. So I make it a habit to trust my own instincts, and I’m generally happier when I do that. 😛

    • Yes, trusting the instincts has been a big one for me, Valerie, and then letting the decision go afterward and just getting on with things. Well done on learning to trust yours and I love that you say you’ve made it a habit. Now that’s one habit I intend to cultivate this year 🙂

  4. I hate making decisions but inevitably find I eventually go with my initial reaction, that gut feeling. Trouble is, by the time I weigh up all the pros and cons first on things, I often find I’ve missed out on a good opportunity. I’ve made some terrible decisions in the past but haven’t we all at some stage. Now, what shall I make for supper?….ah decisions, decisions… 🙂

  5. Yes, terrible decisions, I’ve been there too, Kit, and it’s probably what’s made the decision making process so hard for me over the years. But that good old gut is still the best indicator there is.

  6. I always trust my gut. So far, it’s been a good barometer. And Like Kit, I think the inital reaction is usually the best. Good luck with all the decisions of life, my friend

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