Every day we make tons of decisions. Some are smaller than others, and some are more life-changing than others.
However, sometimes we find ourselves caught between two (or more) equally attractive options, and we just go down the spiral of indecisiveness.
Personally, some of my days start off with the struggle of picking an outfit. Consequently, I start the day late and some of my plans might get off the rails before they even begin.
Indecisiveness is not an uncommon problem. Most people experience it, and in some cases, they consider it a character trait. Is it though?
While several factors can contribute to indecisiveness, my personal favorite is the paradox of choice.
This is where having so many options makes it more difficult to make a decision; thereby suggesting that lesser options make decision-making easier. Sometimes the constant evaluation and reevaluation of the options also makes it complex for us to get to a final decision.
Occasional indecisiveness is harmless, but when it is persistent, it might have some not-so-nice consequences such as procrastination. Below are some tips you can consider when making a decision proves to be difficult.
Sometimes the options you have seem equally attractive until you properly weigh them.
Find a piece of paper or in the notes App on your phone and list the pros and cons of all the options. Visualizing these will help you narrow down your options and render decision-making a bit easier.
In some cases, you have little information about one or even all the choices available.
This lack of information makes decision-making challenging, as you will be unsure of what you will be missing out on. Doing some research pertaining to your options puts you in a position to make more informed decisions.
This is particularly important if you have to make big decisions that could be life-changing, such as choosing a university to go to or a therapist to go with.
Perfectionism and indecisiveness go hand in hand. Chasing perfection might result in you avoiding decision-making entirely.
Because you want to make a perfect choice, you are scared of even making a choice, just in case it is not the perfect choice. In some cases, you need to understand that you’re not perfect, and no one is.
Sometimes you will make decisions that will not be the perfect outcome, but turn out to be teaching moments.
Remember the paradox of choice I mentioned earlier? Beat it by reducing your options.
Buying only two boxes of cereal means you have to decide between the two rather than the five you usually buy. Having fewer clothes in your closet also makes it easier for you to pick an outfit.
If you pay attention to how most successful people dress, you will notice that they wear almost the same outfit every day.
When you have narrowed it down to two options, sometimes simply flipping a coin will save you from going down the rabbit hole of making decisions.
Unsure whether to get food from KFC or McDonald’s? Flip a coin and let the odds make the decision for you.
Using logic is definitely great, but sometimes you have to pay attention to your instincts.
Some things might look appealing, and logically, they seem like a good decision. However, if and when your inner voice tells you otherwise, don’t ignore it.
Keeping in mind that indecision might have more consequences than either of the choices you make, will help you realize that you have to make a decision.
Not making a decision in time might result in you missing deadlines or something along those lines. Weighing the possible negative effects of either of the choices vs. those of not making a decision will push you towards making a decision.
Sometimes we fail to make decisions because we think we have enough time to make the decision.
Give yourself firm but realistic deadlines. When you know that you are supposed to have completed something by a certain date or time, you will likely be more motivated to make the decision and get things done.
Indecision can be crippling.
However, it is nothing to beat yourself up over. Most of us have moments of indecision, and so do some great leaders and successful people.
The important thing is how you deal with that indecision. When you are constantly indecisive, you are vulnerable to having other people make the decisions for you.
Small decisions like what to have for breakfast can easily be solved by flipping a coin, while more important ones like which offer to accept or which person to be in a relationship with can be solved by writing down and weighing the pros and cons of each option.
Once you move on from trying to make the perfect decision, you might find it easier to make decisions.
Remember, “Life is inherently risky. There is only one big risk you should avoid at all costs, and that is the risk of doing nothing.” – Denis Waitley.
February 3, 2023
February 2, 2023
February 2, 2023
February 2, 2023
February 1, 2023