Want to be the Heavyweight Champion of the World…in making choices?

Do you ever feel like you cannot decide what to do? It can be as simple as what to do next in your day-to-day routine, what to wear, which appointment to cancel when you have double-booked yourself (AGAIN) or whether you’re going to go to one grocery store over another.

Life decisions, though—many times—are “bigger” than this. They feel more pressing. They have more effect or consequence in our lives. Should I quit my job, or what should I do now that I’ve lost my job? What do I do with my child who’s so unhappy and suffering? Do I end a romantic relationship or marriage?

Whatever the question – or the gravity of it – the answer is simple. Not necessarily easy, or with immediate or instantaneous desired results, but simple. DECIDE. Right then and there. DECIDE. Make a CHOICE.

What’s that I hear? “Easier said than done.” “Oh yah, right!” “But what if I can’t decide?”

Here’s a fact. You only have two options. Make an ACTIVE decision or an INACTIVE one. Either way, YOU’RE MAKING A DECISION. Don’t kid yourself. There is no such thing as NOT making a choice.

When you have to make a choice and don’t make it, that in itself is a choice.

– William James

I’m not saying that we can control what happens to us, but how we respond, react and move forward is our choice. And if we don’t make an active choice, that choice will be made for us. By other people. Who may not have your best interest at heart. Who may not even know you. Who may not be capable of making good decisions for themselves, let alone you.

Does that sound like something you really want?

I didn’t think so.

So where do we start?

Start with simple decisions or LIGHTWEIGHT decisions, as the kickboxer in me likes to describe it. Instead of sitting on the couch stewing about whether you should start laundry or unload the dish washer or take the dog for a walk, just get up and do one of them. Any of them. Just DO something!

Quit THINKING about what you’re going to do, and in what order, and whether by doing one rather than the other you’re making some sort of life-threatening error!

Keep practicing on this small scale. It may sound insignificant. But building your decision-making muscles on “5-pound decisions” will lead to “10-pound decisions” being easier to lift and therefore conquer.

BEWARE of 25-, 50- or a 100-pound decisions that come along while you’re building your strength. You can experiment with the 5-pound technique above, but it may have less satisfying results on these massive, meat-head choices.

These HEAVYWIGHT decisions may require a little more preparation, training and consideration. But that doesn’t mean they’re impossible. Here’s how to tackle them:

STEP 1: Write down the subject matter/category your decision is about, i.e., career, family, relationship, finances (the list goes on). And figure out 3 things:

A) What are your core beliefs/values on the subject?

B) What are your options? (Brainstorm the different choices you can make on the subject)

C) What are your biggest fears about the subject?

STEP 2: Any option (B) that is NOT in alignment with any of your core values and beliefs (A) will not bring you happiness, fulfillment or even satisfaction. Cross em’ out!

STEP 3: Next, take your fear list (C) and write down, fear by fear, what the outcome would look like if that fear didn’t exist. For instance, if you said, “I’m afraid I might fail,” write down what the outcome looks like if you weren’t afraid to fail. If it wasn’t even an option to fail.

STEP 4: Now match up the successful (love-based) outcome(s) from Step 3 with the remaining outcome options that are in alignment with or closest to your core values & beliefs from Step 1B.

STEP 5:  Take Action!  One obvious answer may present itself at this point. Or if you have a few to choose from, pick up that 5-pound technique, make a choice and follow through.

Too often, we become paralyzed by choices. We believe that there is only ever one right choice to any given situation, and if we make the wrong one, that’s it!  Done for!  Game over!

But WE ALL KNOW that’s not really the case. We have all made mistakes. And we have all learned from them. Sometimes we’ve literally stumbled upon great decisions—or let them pass us by.

We always get another chance. Choose. Choose again.

There are multiple paths and solutions to any decision in life. The problems, fears, stresses and anxieties lie in the not knowing. In the inactivity. In the “I don’t know, so I’ll just do nothing” (which again, IS actually doing something).

Stay fit, toned and in decision-making shape by actively choosing, guided by your own priorities, abilities, passions and heart.

Life is not a pass or fail multiple-choice test. Treat life like the Adventure it is. Then you can never REALLY go wrong!

Publishing my blog and challenges and hearing from you, the subscribers, makes “Thurastic” Thursday (deemed so by my son in 2nd grade) my favorite day of the week!

If this blog post resonated with you in anyway, please share how in the comments below.

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2 thoughts on “Want to be the Heavyweight Champion of the World…in making choices?

  1. kelly

    I loved this: “Life is not a pass or fail multiple-choice test. Treat life like the Adventure it is. Then you can never REALLY go wrong!” Thanks for this great reminder. I am a “recovering perfectionist” and love your encouragement to “just do it” more and not THINK about everything so much. And really, I can’t go wrong, because my life is a gift, and an incredible adventure!

    1. Dana Shane Post author

      I grapple with the same challenges Kelly. I need constant reminders and tools to get my head out of that crippling perfectionist state. And it helps to hear from others who are having similar experiences. Reminds me that we are all so much more alike than we are different. And that we all pretty much want the same thing, to live a life that is the best version of our selves.


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