Someone told me once that teaching your children how to make decisions was one of the best life skills you could teach them. I think this is probably true. Life is full of endless decisions from the small, “what shall I have for breakfast?”, to the large, “shall I buy another horse?” Every decision that we make changes our lives. Some people struggle with decision making, whilst other seem to sail easily through.
I think decision making is difficult. Some people find themselves with “paralysis by analysis” whereby you simply render yourself incapable of making a decision. Some people always pick the easiest option, some always seem to pick the hardest. Some people fail to weigh up their options. The list of way that we can struggle with decision making is seemingly endless.
However there are some good pieces of advice. One is, ask other people’s opinions. Have a group of people who seem to make good choices. Don’t ask for financial advice from someone who is living in a caravan after going bankrupt for the second time. Don’t ask for relationship advice from someone who is on first name terms with their divorce lawyer. Don’t ask for advice on your horse from someone whose horses are always lame and who changes trainers every five minutes.
Weigh up the evidence. Read about critical thinking. Wikipedia defines critical thinking as: “the analysis of facts to form a judgment. The subject is complex, and several different definitions exist, which generally include the rational, skeptical, unbiased analysis, or evaluation of factual evidence.” Don’t base decisions on the opinion of one person. Do your own research.
Believe in yourself. If you have carefully evaluated the evidence, drawn your own conclusion, don’t let yourself be knocked off course by other people. Respect yourself enough to trust that you have made a considered decision.
Decision making can be difficult, but as with everything start small. Evaluate your small decisions and apply a logical process to them. You might be amazed by what you learn…