Sometimes we put off making big decisions. Why?
Why do we waffle back and forth and procrastinate on life-changing decisions, potentially losing out on opportunities, resulting in our lives being directed and shaped by other people’s choices and agendas?
It’s easy to get stuck in a cycle of indecision and second-guessing when facing big decisions.
The good news is you have what it takes to make good choices. So use these steps to make the best choice confidently and drama-free the next time you face a significant decision.
Make Decision-Making A Process
Reduce the drama and overwhelm by making decision-making a process instead of a drama-filled cliffhanger.
Treat decision-making like goal-setting. You know how it works. You chunk big goals into milestones and smaller goals. Follow the same process with decisions.
With decision-making, for example, instead of deciding whether to change jobs all at once, list pros and cons, research different job opportunities, and talk to people in your network.
Is a big decision facing you? List what you need to know to feel comfortable enough to make a solid, informed choice. Then start working through your list one item at a time.
Reframe Your Thinking
What would happen if you saw decisions as opportunities for growth and learning instead of potential mistakes overflowing with fear and regret?
This optimistic mindset shift helps you approach decision-making confidently.
Set A Deadline
To counteract procrastination, set a deadline for making the decision; otherwise, you’ll keep putting it off.
And when you make your final decision, celebrate!
Evaluate The Consequences
List all your options and then think about any potential consequences. What will happen if you choose one path over another?
Draw a line down the middle of the page and list the pros on one side and the cons on the other to see things more clearly.
Which option has the most pros?
And which cons, if any, can you live with and turn into benefits along the way?
For example: Let’s say you’re trying to decide whether to go on a road trip with your friends or to stay home and catch up on some work.
List each option’s pros and cons to help you decide.
Option 1: Go on a road trip with your friends.
- Spend quality time with your friends.
- Get a break from work and daily routine.
- Create new memories.
- Relax and recharge.
- Fall behind on work.
- Spend money on the trip & possibly go into debt.
- Miss out on work opportunities.
Option 2: Stay home and catch up on work.
- Get ahead on work.
- Avoid spending money on the trip.
- Stay on top of work opportunities.
- Miss out on quality time with your friends.
- Get stuck in the rut of daily routine.
- Risk burnout from excessive work.
- Feel like you’re living to work instead of working to live.
Weighing the pros and cons helps you to connect with what’s most important to you now and in the long run.
Seeing the big picture helps you make an informed decision that supports your goals, values, standards, and priorities. And it can help you to know if you should seek the advice of others for help in making the decision.
Seek Trusted Advice
There’s nothing wrong with bouncing ideas off trusted friends and people you respect.
Seek the opinion of family, loyal friends, or respected coworkers who love and support you, and want what’s best for you!
Perhaps they will have valuable insights you didn’t think of. And if they don’t, no harm was done. Thank them and move on.
If putting off making decisions is an ongoing problem, maybe you should get a coach or mentor for help with navigating the decision-making process and overcoming procrastination.
Please, Be Decisive
Usually, you’re much better off making a decision because even if it’s not the best one, it’s still better than not making one at all. After all, you can always adapt or adjust to make things better along the way.
Action is always better than inaction.
By overcoming procrastination, the decision-making process is better and quicker.
By taking small steps, reframing your thinking, seeking support, and setting deadlines, you can make significant decisions more easily and confidently. As a result, you’ll be taking action to unlock your best life!