The best thing about this process is – you’ve got time. There’s usually no hard deadline for your decisions.
However, neglecting to make decisions or not taking action for months or years can drag you down. So…
When you do figure something out, you have to make decisions and go for it. Otherwise, you’re putting your life on pause.
I don’t know everything I want from life yet, but in the last couple years, I’ve looked at the straight facts (Step 2), which blossomed an obvious follow-through.
Here are some facts I’ve determined, and decisions I’ve made. (There’s a lot more facts and decisions currently in the analysis stage.):
This is a great exercise. Try it!
Every now and again, take time to write down facts you’ve learned about yourself and your situation.
Then, write the decisions (whether obvious or examined) that go along with them. It will help you define a clear, future path.
Your decisions can be small. In fact, small decisions lay the groundwork for larger, future decision-making. For example…
Maybe your anxiety is higher in the morning and you need downtime to meditate and set the tone for your day? If so, make the decision and COMMIT! Your day will likely be more successful overall by simply recognizing this fact and TAKING ACTION!
Maybe someone in your life is toxic? Making the decision to keep them at arm’s length (temporarily or permanently) could have a positive impact on your overall stress level.
Figure out the facts. Make decisions. It’s (somewhat) that easy.
Your decisions may not come to fruition over night. You may need a few days or even several weeks to examine the facts. But in my experience, once you identify those facts, the follow-through is usually pretty obvious.
At that point, your emotions may be the next hurdle, so you might have to get into your feels a little.
I’m not saying plunge in from a high-dive! Look at them as if they were big, floating bubbles in front of you. Put your emotions on display for yourself and factually-rationalize them:
- How does the problem make you feel, and why?
- How does a person make you feel, and why?
- Is there something you can do to turn that negative emotion into a positive or, at least, mend it or learn from it?
- If not, can you still live with that situation or person by setting boundaries?
- If not, would your life be better without that situation or person at all?
- Do you simply need time away from a person or situation?
- What is a healthy progression for you?
Examine your emotions as variables. For example, if something makes you feel depressed and anxious, then you’ll do “this.” If something makes you feel negative but effective changes can be made, you’ll do “this.” If something makes you happy, you’ll do “this.”
Making these decisions is not always easy. There are things you need to do for yourself that you sometimes don’t want to. Some actions might even throw you out of your comfort zone. But if we really search ourselves, I believe the facts and obvious decisions are right there. We just have to be brave and put rubber to the road.