Friday, March 10, 2017

How? When? Thoughts on making decisions.

I think a lot about things I've learned in life and then I think about topics for a blog post like, "How to know when to quit your job", "When to work through it and when to walk away (in regards to dating)" and many other When/How topics. Mainly because I know we all ask a lot of questions and often want someone to tell us "How" to do/feel about/decide so many things in life. Often our decisions are validated by the decisions of someone else. I also love to share the things I've learned, hear the challenges people face and offer support. But as these thoughts role through my mind I am reminded that "What is true for me may not be true for you."

So then, how do we navigate the things life throws our way; the new, challenging, hard, good and unexpected?

I think there are some transferable truths that inform much of our process and decisions.
We need these concepts to be stored, remembered and engaged regularly.  

Based on my past experiences and preferred future, what is best for me?

I stole this one from my wise husband. Factor in your past and your desired future and ask yourself what is best? This is why I can't answer for you. My past is different from yours. So is my desired future.  I love this question because it takes the pressure off of the expectations based on what others have decided and invites in a personal process.

What do the people who know me best say?

Yes, our decisions are a personal process but there is wisdom in an outside perspective from people who we know and trust. Invite in, process and evaluate that wisdom.

What do I value?

Do you ever find yourself criticizing the decisions of others only to understand their process once you understand their why? At the core of our decisions our values come into play. We have a "Why". Our why informs so much about how we decide, take action and make shifts in our life. Things often become much clearer when our "why" is in sight.

What do I need to do?

Sometimes, our choice is less of a choice and more of need. Maybe it is a necessary decision to provide for our self or our family, maybe it is a need to remove ourselves from an unhealthy relationship or maybe it is a necessary change to bring us closer to our values.

Maybe you're still thinking, "But I just don't know...".
*Sometimes, we just have to make a choice, let that choice play out and make tweaks as needed.
Sometimes we have to invite in counsel (legit professional help, wise counsel from a mentor, etc.). Sometimes we have to wait. Sometimes we have to work towards a decision.
This post by no means covers the topic of decision making entirely. But if you are processing something (a shift, a desire, a new direction) maybe these questions can help you arrive at a decision.

If you are a Christian you might be wondering where God plays a role in this process. Oh yes, please pray. Please invite Him in. Please create space to listen. But then remember; He has given us the ability to choose. He has given us people to speak wisdom to us. He has given us life knowledge to inform what we do next. And He offers grace as we find ourselves needing to shift our choices.

“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear.”  - Franklin D Roosevelt

Here's to the courageous decisions that lead to the life we're creating, dreaming of and living. 

*This 'Sometimes' does not refer to life altering decisions. Many decisions are not to be taken lightly and those involve a bigger process.
**Dear friend, if I can offer a listening ear or a bit of wisdom, I am indeed here.
***Pictures from our Winter road trip because 1. What is a blog post without photos? and 2. I do my best contemplating in nature with my partner in all things life. 

1 comment:

Laura said...

This is such an important topic to me! I spent a lot of time in my early twenties feeling so confused by God's will and I often felt so lost as I made decisions. I love the wisdom you shared here!