5 Simple Ways to Ensure Great Decisions

Everyone is different when it comes to decision making, some people can make big life changing decisions at the drop of a hat, while others go over and over things until their brain hurts and still won't commit. 

No matter how you normally handle decisions, at some point in your life you will face a point of indecisiveness, here are a 5 simple ways to be certain you are making great decisions.

 1. Weigh the importance of the decision.

In the heat of the moment we may believe the choice we are about to make is life-altering but it's best to take a step back and get some perspective on the matter. Ask yourself how important is this decision really? What are the long-term implications? Will it cost you something substantial in the long-run? What is the worst that can come of this? If it's actually a small concern, don't over-invest in the decision and waste your time and energy on something that is not worth the effort. Picking the wrong logo color may seem like it will make or break your company but in reality it is just one small piece of a large number of decisions you must make to be successful. Give each decision that amount of attention it deserves, and if it passes the importance test go to #2... 

2. Break up the decision into smaller pieces…

Try to break it into smaller pieces that are easier to debate and ultimately decide on. For example, you are approached with an opportunity to partner with another group to sell a new product and you are unsure if you should go forward. At this point you may not know where to start, so instead chunk the decision into questions that will lead to helpful insights. Does this new product match your core objective? If it doesn't you should pass. Does this new product compete with your existing line? If it does, then pass. Do I like the the people I would be partnering with? If you do, maybe you can figure out a different option that can match both of your end goals. It's good to ask yourself helpful questions, just don't fall into item #3...

3. Avoid "Analysis Paralysis".

Don't over analyze while gathering and reviewing information about your decision. It's easy to fall deeper down the rabbit hole with each new piece of information you uncover, but it's best to be sensible with the number of sources and opinions you review. It's fine to bounce things off those you trust, just remember it's still your decision and their input should only be used to help inform not make a choice for you. Reviews are another big source of insight for people but this can also cloud things further. I find myself reading Amazon reviews for products often, and even though there may be over 2,500 positive reviews the handful of negatives will be the ones that stick in my mind and sway me to reconsider my purchase. The best way to get off the analysis wagon is to do #4...

4. Pick a date or time to decide and stick to it.

Rather than drain yourself by endlessly analyzing a situation, set a hard limit to make your decision. Match the time limit with the appropriate level of decision. For example, a small decision could only take a few minutes or hours, a mid-level decision could be a couple of days, and a long-term decision might be a month or more. The amount of time isn't the most important part, rather it's absolutely crucial to stick to the schedule you set. No excuses. Matters must conclude once you reach this limit, anything beyond this will lead to a missed opportunity or a never ending circle of analysis that never reaches a resolution. After you decide, it's important to #5...

5. Keep progressing.

Even if your decision doesn't work out exactly as you hoped. it's unlikely one decision will end up ruining your life or company. Keep moving forward and don't let one decision change your attitude.

 Staying ahead in life and business requires constant decisions, so it's important to get better at making them.