Life is a fantastic journey that offers excitement, setbacks, glory, grief, joy, happiness, difficulties, victories, wisdom, knowledge, crashes, discernment, insight, poverty, wealth and love. These elements, along with so many others that fill our marvelous excursion, require masterful decision-making skills. It’s guaranteed. There is no default pattern or initial response. Every decision is unique to its emergence in our lifeline. We have to make decisions hundreds of times a day, and we have to be pretty good at doing so.
Our ability to make solid, clear-headed, well processed decisions determines the quality of the balance of our life.
Something exists between journey elements and decision making. Its what most of us miss and stumble around trying to figure out while making critical life-altering choices. It’s the process. Most of us want automatic immediacy in all of life preceding the process. Character traits such as integrity, honesty, and purity are established and grown in us through the process.
Processing is taking a series of actions refining the raw materials and needed resources of an idea about a subject and then producing a really good decision.
Is there any such thing as making something simple? In short, there is not. Anytime ‘simple’ is used for a person, situation or any element in life we can count on one thing to immediately follow. That ‘thing’ that follows is hard, difficult, it’s gonna kill me kind of a thing!
- Simple doesn’t mean easy. Great decision-makers know that easy isn’t part of the equation in decision making. The opposite is true. The only thing in life that’s easy is doing nothing, and that comes at a lot of personal costs. In decision making, simple means “straightforward, easily understood, noncomplicated, noncomplex.” Many confuse “easy” with little or no work. “Simple=hard work and clarity.”
- Know your core values. Core values reduce wonder and unnecessary compromise. Who I am and what I believe determine my level of excellence and what settling for less will be. They decide how I will acquire resources and treat people. CVs tell from the beginning of the process whether I will have long-term success or just a mediocre splash.
- Trust the process. There is no way to make a solid, clear-headed decision without trusting the process. We grow broader, deeper and more productive during this part of the decision making. This is the place where past experiences speak and give well-founded advice for the future. Trusting the process is willing to work hard and carry through till we have the finished product-a solid, clear-headed decision, both beautiful, productive and sustained.
- Emotions can’t be trusted. Positive or negative, long-term or short-term, emotions cloud judgment. The ability to future-cast clearly and to see with the unobstructed vision the responsibility of the stewardship of concepts and resources and ultimately, overall success.
- Plans change, decisions don’t. Plans are fluid. Choices are the architectural design. When the road bumps, people failure or resource availability is in short supply, stick to the decisions. Just because you have a flat tire on the first day of vacation doesn’t mean you quit and go back home. Make adjustments and keep moving.
- Decision vs. outcome. One of the most prominent reasons for decisions failing or falling short is ‘failure to finish.’ That’s forgetting that outcome is just as important as the launch of choice. The result is the tangible fruit of the finished work of the idea. Finish well, finish strong.
- Clarity with all, in all. Clarity minimalizes confusion with the process of decision making. If we are not clear about ideas, elements, methods, resources, and people, then we will end up with a flawed decision. Clarity=research, filtering, and communication.
― Steve Jobs