“It is in your moments of decision that your destiny is shaped.” ~ Tony Robbins
Everything that we do in life starts with making a decision. We make decisions every day, starting from the time we get out of bed to the time when we go to sleep. These decisions shape the quality of our days and, ultimately, the quality of our life.
Some of these are smaller decisions, such as what to wear for the day or where to meet a friend for lunch. Some involve daily habits or disciplines, such as deciding to exercise or hit the snooze button one more time. All of them shape our day.
Then there are times we’re faced with larger decisions. Do we want to buy that new car, or save the money for a family vacation. Or we’ve been passed over for a promotion, and we wonder if it is time to look for opportunities elsewhere. Small or large, all of these decisions affect and create the direction of our lives.
When we look at what seem like minor decisions, such as how much sleep we get, or how much we take on at work, even these small-ish decisions can add up over time having a greater cumulative effect.
Decision-making is an area where many people get stuck. Fear of making the “wrong” decision holds us back and prevents us from taking any action.
Why is being decisive an important quality? One reason is that it helps us to conserve our energies – emotionally, physically and mentally. Ever heard of decision fatigue? Making decisions requires emotional and mental energy. Having to make too many decisions in a short period of time or changing one’s mind repeatedly when a decision needs to be made can lead to a reduced capability to make sound decisions, or what is known as decision fatigue.
Another reason to develop this quality is that being decisive can help us be more efficient and organized in how we use our time, which can help us in both our personal and business lives. When we make good decisions, we empower ourselves to move forward in positive ways. We increase our self-confidence and, in turn, others feel more confident in us.
Why is it so hard to be decisive at times? Often it is because of fear of making the wrong decision or, perhaps, concern over what others think. Concern over making a perfect decision can keep us stuck – for days or years! The reality is that you will likely make wrong decisions at times, decisions that don’t work out as hoped for. What then?
A wrong decision doesn’t need to be fatal. The reality is that no one knocks it out of the park every time when making a decision. The good news? You then have the opportunity to assess the situation, determine any changes that are necessary, and change course.
If you are in a leadership position, or aspire to be, learning to be decisive is crucial. Stop worrying about making the wrong decision, about failure. If you can begin to see failure as an opportunity to grow, to make adjustments and keep moving forward, you are on your way to being a decisive leader, in your community, your classroom or the boardroom.
It’s better to make the best decision you can based on the information you have at the time than to stay stuck in indecision.
Decide on what you want, make a plan of action, and implement it. Assess your direction, and course correct as necessary. But make a decision and commit to it. You’ve got this.