Unfortunately, being unable to make quick, concrete decisions can make you look scatty, timid, or like you don't believe in yourself – all of which probably aren't true. So you might want to take the bull by the horns and discover ways to be less indecisive. Until recently I have always struggled with making decisions. BuzzFeed's "7 Moments That Are Terrifying for Indecisive People" video was basically my life and I obviously wasn't alone. My particular struggle came with the need to please people; I would always pick an outcome that I thought would make others happy or make other people like me more.
The root of your poor decision making could be similar, or it could stem from a whole other issue. You might lack self esteem or confidence in yourself or your work, you might be someone that falls apart under any kind of pressure, or you might just believe that all of the choices on offer to you are amazing and you're completely spoiled for choice. We are blessed to live in a world filled with so many choices, but sometimes it feels like we have too many and it can be easy to become overwhelmed. So for all my fellow indecisive humans out there, this is for you!
1. Don’t Succumb To Peer Pressure
Don’t just pick the same thing as everyone else because all your friends are doing it! Ask yourself what you really want to do and if that goes against the grain, so what? All hell will not break loose because you cast the deciding vote on where to eat for lunch. Yeah, you might get a few moans, but I’m guessing you’d rather deal with that than have a boring lunch for the third time this week? Stop people pleasing and do what you want to do for a change.
2. Go With Your Gut
You know that odd drag you have from your core, when you’re trying to make a decision? This is your gut trying to tell you what your deepest desire is, even if you don't know what it is yourself. IMO, your gut is usually right, so listen to what it’s trying to tell you and let it pull you in the right direction. Kathryn Hall, founder of The Business of Introverts, explains how to tap into your intuition on Tiny Buddha. Hall says, "The intuitive voice is a powerful one, but it often needs a quiet, calm, reflective environment to find its way. Learn where you can find some peace, go there when times are hard, and listen with all your might to what your heart and soul are telling you." So when you're faced with a tough decision, go somewhere peaceful and calming and listen to your inner voice.
3. Weigh Up The Pros & Cons
When faced with small decisions, such as whether to walk to work or take public transport, make a quick mental list of the pros and cons of each. When you’re confronted with much bigger, possibly life changing decisions, such as choosing whether to emigrate to another country or not, make a physical list so that you can clearly see the positives and negatives of both sides. Sometimes a pros and cons list will help you to make a decision based on your innermost desires; one option may come out on top with the most positive aspects, but you may still feel the urge to choose the other option. Whichever way you arrive at your decision is fine – you don’t always have to go for the one which looks best on paper.
4. Don’t Always Go For The “Sensible” Option
Continuing with the line of thought in the previous point, you don’t always have to choose the safest or most sensible option. Even if the choice you prefer goes completely against your upbringing, or the expectations of your family, friends, or society this is totally fine. You are a unique individual with your own views and opinions on life – so don’t play it safe because you feel like it’s the most “sensible” thing to do. Carve your own path and create a life that you’re proud of, because your opinion is the only one that matters.
5. Make A Decision & Stick With It
Although this may seem particularly brutal for indecisive folks, if you make a decision and stick with it, this should make you better at making decisions in the long run. You may choose something which you discover wasn’t quite right for you and you might decide to steer your life in another direction, but the point is that you stuck to your guns and made a decision, even if it happened to be the “wrong” one. All of life’s experiences, positive and negative, are lessons for us, so if you happen to make a decision that you later feel was a poor choice, learn from this and make efforts to find out what you want out of life.
6. Make Yourself Accountable For Your Decision
Tell your parents you’ve decided to go back to college, inform your BFF you’re going to become a yoga instructor, or plaster your decision to go backpacking all over your social media. By making yourself accountable and totally owning your choice, you’ll probably feel less likely to back out of it.
7. Live In The Moment
What would make you happiest at this exact moment? If the answer is clear in your mind, base your decision on the outcome that would bring you the most joy. Of course, sometimes we have to plan ahead and make long term decisions which might affect our lives now. However, at the end of the day, your happiness should be a priority and as long as you’re not hurting others on the road to a happier life, you should choose whatever will make you happiest right now. Because the present moment is all we really have.
Put an end to your indecisiveness today and get out there and embrace your choices, because life is for living not worrying!