Good Decision Making: Trust Yourself
When I was in college I wrote a paper making the case that most of the decisions we make are based on fear. My professor told me that I wouldn’t want the grade she’d put on the paper and told me to rewrite it. Clearly, she disagreed. Many years later, I still believe the premise of what I wrote. Much of our decision making is fear based.
We make decisions based on fear of what will and won’t happen.
Is that a good decision? What will happen if I say or do that? Will I get in trouble? Will I get what I want, or will there be negative consequences? Will we make or lose money? Will I lose my job? What impression will that decision make on other people?
Fear is pervasive. It hides in our brain and guides our decision making, without us even being aware of its presence.
I’ll never forget driving up to an ATM machine with one of my closest friends from high school. We were 30 at the time, long past high school, and were in a very quiet and safe neighborhood. And yet my friend told me not to go to the ATM machine after dark because it wasn’t safe.
Says who? A long time ago, someone told her that it wasn’t safe to go to an ATM machine at night. And she believed that she’d be robbed at night, at any ATM machine, anywhere, throughout her adult life. Not sound decision making nor a rationale fear.
Regarding decision making, who is running the show, you or your past?
When decision making, you know what’s best for you. When you quiet the noise in your head and listen, you know what to do. Trust yourself.
Tap into your real desires. When desire overtakes fear, the world will be at your feet. But it can take a lot to even identify that fear is running the show and to know what those desires are.
Trust yourself. Not your fear. When fear rears its head, go to a quiet place, literally and figuratively, and ask yourself:
What do I really want? What should I do? You’ll know. Don’t ask 100 people what you should do. Or do ask other people for advice, but be careful with the answers you get. Underneath all that worry and concern, you know what you want. The key is to listen and be willing to trust yourself.