The subject of decision, properly understood, contains as much if not more potential for good than any other lesson you could study. Mastering the ability to make effective decisions quickly will create what many people would consider to be a charmed life. Decision makers go to the top, while those who do not make decisions seem to go no where.
Paul Arden said “If you always make the right decision, the safe decision, the one most people make, you will be the same as everyone else.”
Mhairi McFarlane said “Do nothing, and nothing happens. Life is about decisions. You either make them or they’re made for you, but you can’t avoid them.”
Decisions, or lack of them, are responsible for breaking or making of many a career. Individuals who have become proficient at making decisions, without being influenced by others, are the same people who create financial freedom. However, it is not only your income that is affected by decisions. Your whole life is affected by decisions. The health of your mind and body, the well-being of your family, your social life, the type of relationships you develop – are all dependent on making sound decisions – asking the right questions.
The contents for our message today are;
- Mental Ability.
- A True Decision.
- A Decision Makers Characteristics.
- A Four Point Process.
- Don’t Wait.
Decision making is not taught anywhere. Not in school, not in our educational institutions and is absent from most corporate training and human resource programs that are available. To develop this ability you must do it on your own. It is not difficult. With proper information, and proper disciplines you can become an effective decision maker.
Proper decision-making eliminates conflict and confusion and brings order to your mind. No one can see decisions being made but will always see the results of your decisions. Indecision sets up internal conflicts which can escalate into mental and emotional wars. Psychiatrists describe these wars as ambivalence – ” the existence in one person of opposite feelings towards the same objective.”
A basic law of the Universe is “create or disintegrate”. Indecision causes disintegration. Everyone has experienced feelings of ambivalence. Studies have shown that ambivalence is the secondary cause of indecision. Proficient decision makers all have one thing in common. They have very strong self-image and a high degree of self-esteem. Decision makers are not afraid of making an error or failure. When they do, they shrug it off and make a new decision. They will never submit to failure.
Every decision maker either was raised in a decision-making environment or developed the ability themselves. They are aware decision-making is something you cannot avoid. The cardinal principle of decision-making is decided right where you are with whatever you’ve got.
A True Decision.
Dr. Carole N Hildebrand wrote, ” There is a corollary element that must go hand in hand with the decision….and that is commitment. It must be a committed decision. Most of us have weak decision-making muscles. We do not even recognize what it means to make a real decision. We fail to recognize the force of change a truly congruent committed decision makes. Part of our problem is that we use the term decision so loosely that it has come to describe our wishes, not our commitments. Instead of making decisions we state our preferences. A true decision means you are committed to achieving a result, and then cutting yourself off from any other possibility.”
Thinking is important. Decision makers are great thinkers. How much consideration do you give to your thoughts? How they affect various aspects of your life. There is a very small select few who make any attempt to control or govern their thoughts. Good decision makers do. They know what they want. Decisions are easy. We become what we think about. Our thoughts ultimately control every decision we make. We are the sum total of our thoughts. Refuse to let unhappy negative people or circumstances affect you.
There is no inspiration in a plan but there is in a vision. When you get the vision, freeze-frame it with a decision and don’t worry about how you will do it or where the resources will come from. Charge your decision with enthusiasm. Do not worry about how it will happen.
A Decision Makers Characteristics.
Dr Abraham Maslow clearly stated that we should follow our inner guide and not be swayed by the opinion of others or outside influences. Mallow’s research showed that decision makers had a number of things in common. Most importantly they did work that they felt was worthwhile and important. They found work a pleasure, and there was little distinction between work and play. Dr. Mallow said “To be self actualized you must not only be doing work you consider to be important but you must do it well and enjoy it.”
These super performers had values they considered to be worthwhile and important. Their values were not imposed by society, parents or other people in their lives. They did make their own decisions. Like their work they chose and developed their values themselves.
A Four Point Process.
Here are four questions I use whenever a major decision must be made:
- Do I want to be do or have this?
- Will being, doing, or having this move me in the direction of my goal?
- Is being, doing or having this in harmony with God’s laws or the laws of the Universe?
- Will being, doing or having this violate the rights of others?
Every question must have an answer. One of the major causes of indecision is a person’s belief in limited supply. There is never any limit. Your potential is unlimited. You will find the value of a decision is going to have a lot to do with the courage to make it. Many great decisions were reached by assuming great risks.
Your life is important. You have the potential to do anything you choose and to do it well. But you must make decisions and when time arrives, you must make your decision where you are with what you have got.
Robert K Greenleaf said “On an important decision one rarely has 100% of the information needed for a good decision no matter how much one spends or how long one waits. And, if one waits too long, he has a different problem and has to start all over. This is the terrible dilemma of the hesitant decision maker.”