We all make decisions almost every minute of every day. Granted, they are small decisions — what to wear, what to eat, what film to see, etc., but they are, nevertheless, decisions. Most of us make these small decisions without even being aware that we are using our own built-in decision-making technique.
Let’s take choosing what to wear, for example:
1. You look at your options.
2. You consider the activity that you are planning to do (this narrows options).
3. You consider the outdoor weather conditions (this narrows options again).
4. You make a choice of what to wear.
The choice is based on the most effective course of action to achieve the desired result. That is what all decision making is about.
You can use that same built-in decision-making technique to make large decisions as you use to make small decisions because your objective is the same: make the best choice. Big and important decisions are more difficult to make, of course, but the process is the same: narrow your choices.
Do you have one of those really big, life-altering decisions to make? Get a piece of blank paper and draw a vertical line down the middle of it. Now across the top of the sheet, write your first possible decision. (Yes, I will do______.)
Now on the right-hand side, list the benefits of saying yes to the decision; and on the left-hand side, list the negatives that saying yes would cause.
Make a separate sheet of paper for each decision that you could possibly make. You will have a clear idea of the positives and negatives of each choice and that information will help you to make the best decision.
I wish I could tell you that using this method would assure that you would always make the best or right decision. It won’t. But it can help you to make the best decision based on the information that you have at the time, and that’s all any of us can do.