“I must have a prodigious amount of mind; it takes me as much as a week, sometimes, to make it up!” – Mark Twain

 

Some of us have trouble making decisions, even small everyday ones. This tendency to overanalyze often has the opposite effect. Instead of finding the perfect choice, we are left doubting whatever choice we do make.

The way out of this trap is first, to admit a tendency to agonize. (At least to yourself, on paper. Everyone else already knows, anyway!)

Then, begin making more decisions every day.

Make a decision, and then decide to go with it, on small issues like what restaurant to visit, what outfit to wear, or what to have for dinner. Just choose, and then observe the results. No judgement, just: did it work out or not?

Big, scary sounding decisions are best handled with the “wait and see” approach. Got an idea to switch jobs or careers, begin or end a relationship, buy that house or move a couple thousand miles away? When a major change seems imminent, try spending less time analyzing pros and cons and more time in quiet reflection, asking the inner voice to guide. Writing about the feelings that arise after these sessions will provide the clarity needed.

Writing about decisions, both big and small, has been a big help to me in becoming less frayed around the edges about little choices and more confident about the big ones.

Exercise: Try a ‘today’s decisions’ writing. Simply list the small choices you made that day, and how you felt about each one.

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