Would you give a known thief all of your hard earned cash or your credit card with the pin number and ask him/her to look after it for you? The question that follows, then, is why do we give anyone else the right or the power to make decisions on our behalf? The fact is there are times when our decisions work out and sometimes they don’t. But none of us is perfect. To me making mistakes is part of learning. How can we ever learn to make decisions if we don’t risk something in the process? Hopefully, people learn from their mistakes because they learn little by their successes. It is incumbent on each of us to take responsibility for making our own decisions and not to base those decisions on what someone else would or would not do. Unless they have ‘a dog in the fight’ meaning something to lose, most people around us are likely to be full of free advice none of which takes into consideration what will this mean to you if it all goes south.
I work as a counselor and a life coach. I don’t ‘fix’ people and I don’t dispense advice to my clients. I’m often asked, however, to offer a variety of viewpoints that can be thought about. With that in mind I put together 3 thoughts and ideas that I often use in my real life for your consideration and you do what you want with them. Use them or don’t use them. Consider them or don’t consider them. That would be your decision to make.
We spend most of our lives learning and applying what we have learned, or what we THINK we have learned, to our lives to see if we can be successful or more successful than the other guy. Truth be known we cannot apply data and facts that we don’t know if we are not aware of what it is we don’t know but need to be in order to make decisions. Sounds convoluted-I get that.
So to simplify this point:
- I began counting less on facts and data and more on my feelings, instincts, and emotions. I am careful to use only data that is fixed. For example by-laws or things that are written in stone. Most other data and facts are much more fluid these days, thanks to technology, and using them to apply to a particular context can be hazardous. Contexts change as well so how can we use what we know or think we know to be facts with any certainty.
- I cannot allow fear of what might happen to interfere with my opportunity to decide something of importance. There is a difference between being afraid and being respectful of something. Fear can paralyze me if I allow it to. Being respectful makes me slow down from making snap decisions that I cannot justify. I need to depend more on how I feel or have been thinking. It gives me an opportunity to become better informed before I decide. We are our own best experts on us. No one knows us better than we do. IF we pay attention to ‘us’ we will more often make the right choices or decisions.
- If I do approach a respected and experienced friend or colleague I need to prepare questions ahead of time so that I don’t get swayed, side-tracked or lose sight of what information I am seeking and why and how I might utilize the information to suit my particular set of circumstances. I need to distinguish between his/her points of view based on their success and not what they would do if they were me.
In order for me to feel good about what I have done, I need to have as few regrets as possible. I am more likely to feel that way if I am the ‘captain of my own ship’. That way I have no one to blame and I can take the credit as well.
Anyways, that’s how I see it. Thanks for stopping by
All the best, Jim
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Disclaimer: Photo resource used for education, criticism or research purposes only. I derive no financial gain from the use of this photo/quote