What is one of the scariest things we do as guys? No it isn’t entering the room of the teenager, nor is it trying to decipher the “Sure Go Ahead” your wife just gave you. Though that last is more suicidal than scary. How many people do you know who falter when it comes to making a decision?
Decisions seem to trip us men up on so many levels. What? No way. Yeah, and it’s not just men but women too struggle with making decisions. That is why there is a saying that it’s a woman prerogative to change her mind. Making a good confident decision can be overwhelming.
Then add to the mix the weight of the decision and people often freeze. Others over analyze and create a paralysis through analysis. This also happens when people have big ideas. The biggest killer of a dream is at the curial fork in the road. How do you do <blank>? So let’s look at what a decision is and why you should make up your mind.
What is a Decision
According to Think Legacy, the root of decision originates from the mother of all languages Latin. The word decide, depending on who you read, means to cut off or to drop.
That explains why to decide sounds like homicide, insecticide, herbicide because it kills choices. Now I get it sounds gruesome and horrible. Yet, this is a great way to look at this particular word.
This is because what are you doing when you decide on a choice. You have cut off or kill the other choices. If you look at it in this way, making choices is a lot like a bonsai tree. You have to cut off the unneeded parts of the tree to see the inner beauty. So the right choice shines forth when you actually cut off all of the bad options.
That is a great way to approach all decisions.
Troubles with indecision
We all face a moment of indecision. Should I do A or B? I really don’t like C but you know it has its benefits. We face this all the time. Often our decisions are small and insignificant. Denny’s or Huddle House? Ford or Chevy. Eat in or Go out for a bite.
Then there are the decisions that carry some weight. Should I buy this car or save for a house? Should I invest in my friends business idea? These choices often have some ramifications. You will go into debt, or the business could be a flop. So you don’t want to just blindly choose yes or no.
There is a lot that goes into these heavier choices. When should you leave your place of employment and venture out on your own? If you are married is the wife on board with you leaving? How much debt are you in? How much runway do you have? All of these different factors impact your outcome. If you have some debt and the wife is OK with a year or two of living in a very lean lifestyle, then you may want to make the leap. If not then your choice may be to side hustle your dream till you make enough to satisfy all worries.
Should you or should you not? Many people shy away from making big decisions though. Especially the large life-altering changes. The reasons are, at the time, valid. In reality, even without making a choice they are making the decision. That is because not making a decision is actually making a decision.
More is lost by indecision than wrong decision. Indecision is the thief of opportunity. It will steal you blind.
— Mahitabb (@Mahy_Elansary) August 17, 2018
The Biggest Choice Destroyer
What causes people to stumble on making a choice in the first place? That is 100% fear. They are afraid they are going to choose incorrectly. They are afraid they are going to alienate their family. They are afraid they are going to succeed and that it will change them.
All these reasons are predicated on a “what if”. They are afraid of what is going to happen when they choose. Yet not a single one is a fortune teller. They can’t see the future. So they are actually afraid of the unknown. The emotions are what scares a person.
Fear is an emotion that is used to keep you in a state of comfort. When we were more simple-minded. If you went into an unknown area, there was a good chance that you would wind up being food for a bigger beast or you may get hurt and die from an infection.
This fear of the unknown still resides in our mind. It now keeps us safe from change. People often will deflect their fear by saying they are realist or being realistic. When in reality, Being realistic is the path to mediocrity.A pretty cool quote I think Will Smith said that. Share it with your friendsClick To Tweet
This fear can actually be defeated. When you realize that you are actually afraid of an emotion and discomfort. That is it. You will not die by improving yourself. You will only improve.
Practical Ways to Make a Decision
When you are faced with a decision, there are options you can take to make the choice a little bit easier. It can also help you make your decision with greater confidence. We often make our worst decisions when we have lower confidence in the decision options. When you are secure and confident in your decision you are more likely to win with the right choice.
So how do you make a confident decision? That is surprisingly easy but very tough to implement. You have to be aware of your objective. What are you wanting to accomplish? From there you can take the needed steps to make an educated choice.
The effective leaders know that they don’t know it all. Though they do know enough to know that they don’t know. (What did he just say?) General George Washington was known to ask everybody questions. He would approach the lowly soldier and get his view on a situation. Lincoln did the same thing.
Ask questions. Nobody knows it all. So you have to ask a question to learn of all the different outcomes. Once you have all the advice and information you believe you need, then you will be more confident when you do make a decision.
There is a verse in the Bible Proverbs 27:17 that states that “Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another”. This is a mastermind. Men become better when they are around their peers. There have been examples of mastermind groups all through history. From the Inklings that brought forth JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis’ genius. To King Auther and the Knights of the Roundtable. Nobody was at the head of the table and each man helped each other. Ben Franklin had a very famous mastermind group called the Junto Club.
The term mastermind came about from Nepolean Hill in his book Think And Grow Rich. In his book, he lays out the mastermind principles of why it works. You can see him explain it in the video below.
It is obvious that no man knows it all but multiple men can put together a more clear picture of what to do. Each guy then helps all the others out and they, in turn, help him grow to be the best person he can be.
Note: I am looking to start a mastermind group if you would be interested in joining let me know.
There are several different ways you can do a pugh matrix. From Stephen Coveys Priority matrix to a weighted matrix. Each one lays out a way for you to make a good decision. The reason why this works is that your priorities are factored into your decision making.
You lay out what you find to be important and then after you have everything entered you get a good result that you can confidently go out and commit to.
This is a simple decision tool. You make a t-graph and start writing the pros to a solution and the drawbacks to that same solution. You keep this up till out run out of possibilities. Then assign an importance number between 1 and 5. You give a score that to each factor you enter. Add them together and you find out your answer.
The Coin Toss
Now, this is not for the reason you are thinking of. The coin toss itself is actually a really bad decision-making tool. Yet tossing a coin makes you brain spit out what it already knows to be the answer. It sort of like putting a gun to its head and making it choose.
Coin tosses cause your mind to blow past the extemporaneous fluff that is in the way of the decision-making process and allows the decision to shine.
Are you going to be right in your decision-making process 110% of the time? No, You will get it wrong from time to time. The key here is to make a decision. Make it with confidence that you are on the right path. If you chose incorrectly then Learn from your experience so that next time life dishes out that issue you will make the choice with even more confidence.
There are several ways you can make a decision none of them are bad as long as you make a decision. The worst step you can make is just not deciding, and you put it off to a later date. You don’t want fear to win. If that happens then you will just wish and hope that you succeed instead of achieving your goal.
Did you learn a new way to make a decision? If so share this post with your community. Let them learn how to make a good decision too. We can help each other grow.
I like being able to help people find their “why” and achieve the personal freedom they desire. Besides writing for Relaxed Male I also am a life coach. By helping men find the leader that is found in each and every one of us. I do this by encouraging men to get outdoors and find the balance they are missing. Realize that they need to be in contact with the outside as often as they can. It is not only good for them but for their families and relationships.