In Part One of Making Big Decisions, I talked about the WHY Factor: WHY can it be so difficult to make big decisions? Often, it has to do with fear, doubt and insecurity (among other things, but these are the three biggest factors, imo.)
In this blog, I am going to talk about trusting your intuition and not allowing your fears, doubts or insecurities interfere with your decision making abilities.
First, let’s do a quick debrief on what “intuition” is. The short and easy answer is that intuition is that hunch you feel in your gut. It is not necessarily measurable and is not something that can be seen. It is experiential…sort of.
It’s that feeling you get when you meet someone and get their vibe, good or not so good. It’s when you know you should go right, when all other indicators tell you to go left.
It’s often unexplainable. When it’s clear, it is CLEAR.
When it’s not clear, it can be downright confusing.
Here’s what I have come to learn about intuition. I know that my intuition is always looking out for my best interest. That’s not to say that every instinct I have leads to success, but more often than not, my intuition steers me in a good-for-me direction. It offers me the next step that I need to reach higher levels of the success I am aiming for.
If I had a dollar for every time I ignored my gut instinct, I’d be so freaking rich. I have had to learn the hard way to listen to myself over what other people want me to do.
For so many years (basically…my whole life), I let other people influence my decisions simply because I didn’t have the confidence in myself to make my own decisions. I put more stock in what other people thought I should do than what I thought. There were so many times my instinct urged me to one way (which was often more risky or at least more controversial), but others urged me to go a more traditional, safer route, avoiding fallout and keeping me in check. I had a “nice girl” reputation to uphold, after all.
I’m not saying that people in my life were bad or evil. Many of them would have said that they were looking out for my “best interest”. The truth is that it is really hard to be objective when offering advice, so are people really looking out for you or perhaps looking out for you through the lens of what is also in their best interest? I talk about this more in a later blog.
I have learned how to listen to and rely on my own intuition. I’ve had to and it has been so good for me. I could not have done it without someone coaching me to listen to MY gut, instead of telling me what he/she thinks I should do.
It’s been hard. REALLY freaking hard. But, it has been so worth it, regardless if I made the “best” decision or not, making my own decision based on MY intellect, MY intel and MY intuition has been epic in helping me strengthen my confidence.
When it comes to decision making, YOU have to be the one to make the decision, because it is YOU who is going to live with the outcome of your decision. So, if you are not feeling it, take heed. There is probably a reason.
There are a few important things to know about making a decision:
NOT making a decision is far worse than making a decision that may not work out for you. Not making a decision is putting yourself in a stalemate. There is no movement in any direction and therefore, you can not progress. That’s a bummer.
Making a “bad decision” can still be a good thing. If you make a decision that turns out to be the wrong decision for you, at least you know. Chances are very high that you will have learned some valuable lessons along the way. Learning the hard lessons is a good thing (even if it’s annoying at the time), because you are more equipped to make a better decision next time.
PRO TIP: Always have the mindset that you will take more from a “bad decision” than it takes from you. If you walk away defeated, that decision took something from you. But, if you can learn, even one small thing, from that seemingly bad decision, then you took more from it. You win. If that’s not a Universal Law somewhere, it should be.
If you make a “bad decision” and learn an important lesson, is it still a bad decision? I’m not so sure. You may not want to repeat that decision, but if it has some good outcomes, it might just be a decision that you would do differently next time instead of labeling it a “bad decision”. You feel me?
If you are doubting your ability to make good decisions for yourself, sadly, you are not alone. The good news is that you don’t have to stay in that doubt. You CAN do something about it.
That “something” starts in the mind.
Here’s a mantra that I LOVE and has helped me feel and BE much more confident when it comes to making bigger decisions. This is an affirmation that I got from my coach and it has served me well.
I have the ability to make any decision work for me.
This is so important for those of us who are unsure what to do in a tricky situation. If this affirmation is true for you, then you can have the confidence that whatever decision you make and no matter what the outcome of your decision is, YOU are in control of how you respond and react. YOU are in control of what you think and what you take from the outcome. AND THEN, you can use the new information that you have gleaned to make a better decision next time.
How brilliant is that?
What do you think? I’d love to hear from you! Do you have any questions? Let me know! You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.