10 Ways to Make Big Decisions
Sep 02, 2020
- Pros and Cons List
Classic - this has to be the most common way of making big decisions. We draw a line down the centre of the page and start noting the pros and cons of the decision.
- Take Time
Some things need an urgent response but if you can give yourself even just a few days it might help to make an informed, balanced decision, rather than a purely emotional or reactive one.
- Ask Questions
Ask yourself and ask others involved. Sometimes it helps to just write down the start of questions -
Then below these prompts you can list or note all of the things you are thinking about, considering, are excited by or that challenge you. As answers or ideas become available to you, you can note those as well!
- Limit your options
Ever been to a restaurant where there’s a simple menu with just a few options? You still find some delicious to eat, right? When there are too many options our brain can become overwhelmed, or might focus on unhelpful things. Try to make the decision between just a few key options. Anything too similar to another option can be removed or maybe even collated/combined.
- Run, do yoga, meditate
Get away from the desk. Put the pen and paper down. Release some of that energy and adrenaline. I know when I am facing a big decision, tough or exciting, my body responds with similar conditions to anxiety. Being physical and getting outdoors is healing and could calm the nerves.
- Forecast Financials
No surprises here… your accountant wants you to check the numbers first. No matter how good your gut instinct might be, please be sure to do even a basic financial forecast. What impact does this have on income, expenses, profits, debts, repayments, length of time, your lifestyle?
- Talk to trusted friends, family and advisors
As sole operators we are used to working on our own and making decisions ourselves. Ultimately the credit is ours, and so is the responsibility, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get outside perspectives. It might help to just vent, or to talk through your pros and cons list with others. In my experience though:
a) Pick a diverse few people
b) Don’t rely only on friends and family. Have someone who is experienced in this area but doesn’t have a vested interest
c) Talk to a few, but not too many.
d) Listen to them, but try not to do or not do something because they said so. This is YOUR decision to make.
- Review your purpose, vision, goals, and values
Don’t climb the mountain just because it is there!
But also, growth stops when we stay within our comfort zone.
You want to check in on your personal or business values firstly, and then vision for the future. It is ok for the vision to change over time too. This might be a once in a lifetime opportunity that you just have to take. Or this might be something shiny that is seducing you, but actually steers you away from your core values and vision.
- Exercise the muscle of decisiveness
Making decisions gets easier the more you do it. No need to shy away from it.
- Own the decisions, for better or worse
Regret nothing - you made a good decision, with knowledge, heart and hope. Live with it and move forward, ready to make the next one. Every decision is the right one, because you made it so.
p.s. I am here to be one of your advisors if you need