Throughout this life, you will make thousands of decisions. Some are small, such as what to have for breakfast or how to style your hair for the day. You likely make these choices without thinking too much and don’t ponder the outcome after they’re made.
However, life also has more extensive and complex decisions in store. If you are considering a move, a new job, or a change in relationship, it can be hard to make a resolution.
Make Decisions for YOU
When you decide about your life, you should make it primarily for yourself. Even though your decisions could impact those around you, they will affect you the most. It’s vital that you keep that in mind. However, it can be challenging to do, and that’s understandable.
Making your own decisions is not an easy skill to learn. Some people assume that you can simply snap your fingers and become confident enough to make the most significant decisions without help. But if you’ve come to rely on other people for decisions, it can be a hard habit to get into.
The first thing to do is remember that no matter what other people say or think about your decision, it belongs to you. Your life is the most impacted by it. Work towards listening to your inner voice before hearing the voices of others in your life.
Decisions that Directly Affect You
When a decision directly affects you, the last word is yours. Although you need to know that any decision you make will impact others in your life to a certain extent, you are the one making the decision, and you are the one who will live with the consequences. No matter what happens, it’s up to you.
If that realization scares you, and that’s why you would instead rely on other people, take some time to think. Consequences aren’t always bad things. If you move to a new city, you will face some challenges, like living far away from family, making new friends, and discovering a new place.
This experience will surely have its pros and cons, but embracing new challenges is what makes us grow. So, take a deep breath, and trust that you will make the right choice for you at that time.
Making a decision takes practice – it won’t be easy the first time. However, for the biggest and scariest decisions, you will reflect on them enough until you realize what’s best for you. No one knows this better than you. Even if you’re unsure and afraid of moving forward, keep going until you feel you’re where you’re meant to be.
Owning Past Decisions
Many people who struggle making decisions do so because of the anxiety of making the wrong decision. This could either be due to never having made a significant decision on their own or having made mistakes in the past.
Before you can successfully and confidently move forward to make your own decisions, you’ll need to face your past and accept that those decisions you made, good or bad, put you where you are today.
Sometimes, the worst past mistakes can lead to some of the best futures imaginable. Sometimes, they don’t, leaving you terrified to make a wrong decision again. However, instead of regretting your past, turn those “mistakes” into lessons and use that experience to make wiser decisions in the future.
Accepting (Or Rejecting) Considerations from OTHERS
One of the most challenging things to get over is listening to everyone’s opinions before deciding. You can be set on one way of doing something, and then a friend tells you it’s wrong, and you have no idea what to think anymore. It’s alright – this happens to everyone. You’re not alone, but you can move away from it.
We depend on other people in our lives in many ways, and decision-making can be one of them. Here is a guide on how to take advice from others, when to rely on it, and when to walk away.
Feedback/Advice from Others
First of all, there is a difference between taking advice from someone and listening to advice from someone. There will always be people who have opinions, and you can’t always stop them from telling you what they think you should do. However, just because someone tells you what to do doesn’t mean you have to do it.
There are two main types of people you should try to get advice from when making a big decision: trusted, wise friends and those who will be most affected by your choices.
Talking to someone you trust and love will give you a new perspective. Asking for advice doesn’t mean you’ll take it, but it can give you some other opinions or facts you might not have considered. When you ask for advice, you’re doing it on your own terms and not listening as someone else forces their opinion on you.
While you should make choices for yourself, it’s essential to consider those who it affects the most. If you’re moving, talk to anyone who might need to carry with you – children, partners, etc. You don’t want to make a choice without giving them an opinion, even if it’s not up to them in the end.
The most crucial factor in listening to advice is knowing this: listening to someone’s opinions and advice is not the same thing as following them. When it comes down to it, you will have to make and own this decision. It should be based on your beliefs and research and not rely on what others have told you.
Expert Advice From Professionals
Of course, there are times when you are not qualified to make a decision just by yourself. In these situations, it’s crucial to get help from experts or professionals. For instance, if you are facing a health or a legal decision, you should look for medical or legal advice. Getting unbiased expert advice is not a sign of weakness – it will help you become informed enough to make a proper decision.
Stick to the Same Decision-Making Process
The most important thing you can do when making a series of choices is to develop a decision-making process and stick to it. It will be difficult at first, mainly if you’ve always relied on others or never been confident enough to do it before. However, with time, you’ll be able to find that the best way is the one you chose.
Your decision-making process should be concrete. Some people make a pro and cons list and number them in order of importance. Some choose a set of simple questions to ask themselves or a flowchart. Whatever you choose, use it for every small or big decision, but know that some decisions might be beyond the scope of your process and that some situations will require thinking outside the box.
Make Your Own Decisions!
Once you’ve come up with a decision-making process, written it down, and started practicing making more minor decisions, you can look at the broader choices you might have been avoiding. And remember, the more you practice, the more confident you will feel. It’s ok to listen to those you trust, but in the end, follow your inner voice and make the decision that you find best.