It’s the middle of December, and what better time to talk about simplicity
WORDS // DANA BYERS
Every day, you and I wake up to countless opportunities to tackle indecision.
Should you have corn flakes or scrambled eggs for breakfast? Will you wear the yellow shirt or the white one? Take the time to cook dinner or spend the money to eat out? Fire the employee or give him/her another chance? Leaders make countless decisions on a daily basis. Whether you’re a recording artist, the world’s best uncle, or a CEO, I have no doubt you’re already nodding your head in agreement.
We literally have too many options everywhere we go. Those options can take a good thing and make it hard to endure. (Ever tried buying a bathing suit in less than 15 minutes? I rest my case.)
I’ve noticed that giving co-workers, friends or my kids too many options causes them stress. These days, driving, shopping and even browsing the Netflix menu force us to tackle indecision. With that truth in mind, I’ll try to go light on the examples so I don’t stress you out unnecessarily.
The problem with our consistent need to tackle indecision is that, in the moment, it’s difficult to anticipate the full future outcome of our choices. The good news is that you can minimize the energy required to tackle indecision by coaching yourself through a few key questions.
Try these 3 methods to tackle indecision:
- Coin toss. You think I’m kidding but I’m not. Many of the decisions that we waste precious mental energy on don’t deserve it. Will you have chicken or beef in your stir-fry? Let the coin decide, and save the mental energy for things you really need to focus on and be productive with in life.
- Advise a friend. Pretend a friend has to tackle indecision like you need to right now. Put them in your shoes then advise them on your situation. Let’s say you need to choose between buying a home closer to work that costs more or buying one for less that will require a 30-minute commute. Pretend your friend is facing this same situation and ask yourself what you’d suggest he do. Then follow your own doggone advice.
- Will this decision matter in six months? If not, take the simplest path. If it will make a significant difference, choose the option that requires the extra mile so that nothing’s left to chance. You grasp the importance of this question when you recognize that not all decisions are of equal value: like which color of car to choose versus whether to pay for life insurance.
Don’t get hung up on inconsequential decisions thrown your way each day. You have everything you need to tackle indecision quickly so as to save your mental energy for what truly matters most!
What questions do you ask yourself to help tackle indecision on a daily basis?
Dana Byers is a dynamic leader with a passion for simplicity. She has led in various executive roles at churches around the country, in addition to leading in her home with her two children. You can follow her at danabyers.com