Welcome to episode #168 of the Own Your Best Life Podcast. When we feel like we’re not sure where to start or what to do next, we often want to be more decisive. We want to move with a sense of authority and certainty. Yet, life is filled with complications and nuances. What if it doesn’t work out how you thought? What if you miss out on something amazing? These are the questions that come up when we’re faced with indecision. Today’s podcast on Becoming More Decisive is the first domino you need to help you make the hard decisions.
The art and science of decision-making is one of the most valuable skills you can develop. Our life is shaped through the decisions we make. Judgements, beliefs, and lives lived based on decisions.
When you want to consider what makes a good decision or a bad decision – or how to make the “right” decision – these are binary choices. Yet life is not binary. This is why I think it’s more helpful to focus on becoming more decisive. This is the ability to make a decision. The more decisions you make, the more you learn about yourself, situations and other people. We want to make more decisions so we get the most experience under our belt to continue to use as information.
Decisions made in our mind is often where we get lost. We’ve decided that we’re going to start to eat more healthy or move our bodies, but when the day comes to do it – we falter. We’ve decided in our minds that we’re going to reach out to that person and ask for help, but when it comes to the 10 minutes you have that day, you end up doing something else.
Take Action on Decisions
Decisions made in action is where lives get created. Consider the last big decision you made. Perhaps it was a school you went to or a person you married. Those decisions were life-altering. Those decisions were not made in your mind only. They were made in real life. Every day you took action based upon that decision. Every day you face the consequences of those decisions. It wasn’t a “pretend” decision. It was real.
Yet, consider all the decisions you still have in your mind – floating around without anything to anchor onto. These are all the things that take up your mental capacity. When you’ve made a commitment in life by taking action that connects you to the decision, you’ve freed up mental capacity to do things that move you forward.
Reality always wins. You find out what it’s really like to start a business, to change careers, to take a trip, to hire a coach, to commit to a relationship, to work out and eat healthier consistently. You find out exactly what goes wrong and what goes well and what could be done differently. You don’t sit there wondering if you should. You did, and you sit there wondering how you can enjoy it even more.
Practical Exercise in Decision Making
Write down 10 decisions you want to make, today. Pick the lowest risk item and practice becoming decisive. Think about how long it would take you normally to make a decision on all these items and ask yourself how you can do it in 10% of the time. 10 minutes becomes one minute. Take action on the lowest risk decision today using that time limit and evaluate. Become more skilled over time by making bigger and bigger decisions. Always evaluating.
I did this myself and that’s how I ended up taking 4 week trips each year. How I changed careers. How I recreated relationships and deepened them. How I made more and different money doing what I love. How I became a person who isn’t just one thing or another – but someone free from an identity. When you make decisions over and over again while seeing them come into fruition you realize you’re only ever one thought away from becoming exactly what you desire. Your thoughts, when held to real life actions – become decisions.
Learnings from Decisions
You learn that you’re biased in a certain direction when you make decisions. You learn how to overcome that bias by taking other decisions. You learn how accurate you are in your skills of predicting outcomes. You learn how to use your intuition to help you decide and what your body feels like when you make certain decisions.
Saving Time and Energy When Deciding
To save time and energy, you can also make a decision to not make a decision. To wait until you’re done with something to decide. But if you do that, you must actually decide at that point with the information you now have. Otherwise, this is analysis paralysis. Where years and days go by without any real movement towards whatever it is you’ve been thinking of doing. It’s not always that you must decide to do something differently. Sometimes the decisions are about you sticking to the plan. To come back to what you originally said you would do and your commitment.
Relationships are one of those things that you can decide to recommit to and it benefits you not to change the course of your decision but to still keep going.
This is one example where recommitment to a decision helps. Yet, this is a bias. Perhaps you always commit and stick to plans. Your decisions might be to break your plans and deviate. This is what becoming decisive helps you understand. It’s not just about taking no time to make decisions, it’s about becoming more rational and neutral in your approach to decision making. To not judge so quickly but to understand what you’re leaning towards. To take actions consciously.
When you start to do this more, you’ll learn what neutral thinking feels like and these are where some of your best decisions will come from. When you’ve overcome your own biases. When you don’t do what you’ve always done but do what’s most helpful for you in this moment. You will be able to help yourself get unstuck and be a leader in your home and organization so much more easily when you become more decisive.
In summary, you’ll want to take practical action and do something today to develop that muscle. Take action on decisions, evaluate and repeat. Keep making decisions and you’ll find so much more simplicity in your days. You’ll have so much more energy for the hard decisions when you become more decisive. Keep me posted on how this practice goes.
In order to help you dig deep and evaluate what hard you want to work through to make life easy, I’ve created a free workshop for you. We’re heading into the summer and it is one of the best times to shift perspectives and break free of old beliefs and identities. The workshop replay is live now and my goal is to help you have a magical summer, even if you’re super-busy. A summer where you get to be re-inspired. You can sign up here at this link: Link here. Tell everyone and share it – I’m sharing all the practical and spiritual strategies that have helped me maintain a full life of purpose while also being an entrepreneur, corporate trainer, wife and mom.
If you’re ready for a change, I’d love to support you.
We also have an exciting announcement about our next retreat on August 7-11, 2023. We’ll be helping you think through that next leg of your journey and career. Imagine walking out knowing what’s next, the roadmap and getting started. I’m bringing you the Career Revelation Academy in live form and you’ll also have access to it digitally as well – how to make a career change in 30 days. Yes, that’s right – 30 days. Let’s go… reach out at www.mayempson.com/contact to book your spot.
If you like this blend of both practicality and mindset, you will love coaching. You can schedule a consultation at www.mayempson.com/contact to learn more about working together and joining this community of like-minded, open and curious seekers. It is the powerful group and private coaching hybrid experience for achievers who want to expand their vision of what’s possible. Twelve months of support, individualized guidance, community and retreats. We will help you build your confidence, trust your intuition and make decisions that you love.
That’s it for this week. Have an amazing one and I’ll talk to you next time.