The Business of Decisions
Making a decision and having to step into the “unknown” is always a scary, sometimes sad, time. At the same time it is a huge opportunity for the opening of new doors. We deal daily with team and entrepreneurs alike that are struggling with the “change” in their life and there is one thing we can promise you— burying your head in the sand and not confronting a decision IS a decision. Indifference is a decision and waiting for the ‘other person’ to make a move first is still a decision.
From two gals who’ve been through a lot of change, here are some insights on making decisions and the change that follows:
1. There is NO right answer to how to handle making a decision. Everyone will give you advice and suggestions but every person and every set of circumstances is different. So there is no “right” answer. All anyone can do is ask questions to help you find your own answers and give you things to think about. The power is in the questions your friends and advisors are asking you.
2. What works in one moment may not be the right answer for the next. Change is a process. One scenario you may need to approach the issue at hand with calm serenity. The next you may need to just lose your cool and have a breakdown. You are changing and growing through this process, so what you need in the moment will change as well. Don’t be too hard or rigid with yourself. There will be times you are disappointed in yourself and times you are very excited. Just roll with it and stick it out.
3. The process of major change can be a complete roller coaster. Just stay on the roller coaster until the end. You WILL make it through—the prize is in staying awake to the process.
4. Making a tough decision is NOT all bad. You begin to feel yourself awaken but it can be tiring because it’s emotional. Typically you can’t move forward as fast as you want to because of all the details to sort out in the process. Look forward to the good part of the process – the reconnecting with yourself and the VAST possibility and opportunity that opens up for you. Decisions come with emotions. Leaving a partnership, firing an employee, closing a business, leaving a lease you have been in for years that is no longer a good fit – all of these decisions would be a no brainer, but for the human/relational element. And most often the other party involved can very easily make you feel guilty during the process. Or the alternative, they kick it up a notch and rise to the occasion just when you were ready to pull the plug and make you question your decision. Don’t buy into it and anchor to the very reasons that brought you to a crossroads in the first place.
5. Go through The Decision Making Model ™ to clarify not only the pros and cons of a decision, put the emotion energy you are putting into the situation everyday that may be robbing you of productivity, energy, confidence, clarity and joy. Put pen to paper while it’s fresh. At any moment when you are confused or feeling bad for your decision, anchor back to this process and connect to it, and know you are doing the right thing.
6. Don’t confuse grieving over a loss and a dream you once had to being wrong for your choice. It’s not the same thing. The grieving and longing is a symptom of how committed you were and letting that commitment go is hard. Nothing more, nothing less.
7. If you change your mind it’s ok. You being happy and fulfilled is the goal – nothing else matters. And if you find yourself at a crossroads again on this issue, repeat Step # 5 until you can make a decision where this issue doesn’t continue to rear its confronting head.
8. Let your inner circle help you and support you. They want to – don’t try to be too strong. Even if you feel like you are repeating yourself – they understand. It’s a process.
9. The decision you are making today probably looks nothing like what it did when you entered into the relationship or situation. Typically every reason why you decided to make a change will be amplified during the process. Particularly if people are involved, once they no longer have a reason to vest into a relationship with you, they often are less attentive to communicating with you. Not always, but often.
10. Anchor to something BIGGER. The vision of something bigger in your life will give you the motivation to get out of bed and press on.
Most importantly – HOLD your HEAD UP HIGH– with pride. 85% of people are miserable in their current circumstances but too afraid to do anything about it. Whatever your decision, share it confidently and people will generally react positively. You set the tone. State the decision concisely and clearly – “I dissolved the partnership” or “we are closing the shop”. Don’t over explain. Have your one-line response for when people say “what happened” and leave it at that. The “story” really doesn’t matter and is more often than not saturated with blame and/or defeat. Be proud of your willingness to look at a situation that isn’t working, make a hard decision, take action and be excited about your future. People will always pursue someone who has a confident vision of the future.
The beauty of a making a decision is that either way you are confronting what isn’t working. Whether you end something, change something or re-commit to something confronting that is isn’t working is an absolute before you can have a clearing for a breakthrough.
If you would like a copy of The Decision Making Model™ email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In your corner,
Laney & Molly