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Wherever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision. Peter Drucker

One of the most apt quotes from the foremost management guru’s of this century, it is very relevant to us,  for decision making is perhaps the toughest and most critical competencies that a human being has to have,  in order to progress. Your decision to read this blog now,  is the reason you have reached so far and now you have to make the decision to read more or to do something else.  Perhaps at this very moment you get a telephone call or a chat message, it is more likely that you will take a decision to focus on that, than to continue to read this. Notice that the distractions/ the temptations/ the alternatives are there are all moments and you and you alone take the important decision to succumb to them or prioritize your actions.

Apart from distractions, many of us suffer from another dimension of decision making viz. Paralysis by Analysis. Fear of failure is the main culprit for this. We would like to fail proof our decision, but that is easier said than done. To this end though, we seek facts, more facts and still more facts in the form of tables, charts, data, information etc. pertaining to some critical item on our agenda, but rather than getting clarity on the next course of action, we are often confused, caught up in the myriad of figures and data and would rather sit on the available information than take a concrete decision. Our sub conscious logic being if things turn out to go well wonderful; else we aren’t responsible, it is fate. What we fail to realize is that not taking a decision itself is a decision! Your fate is in your hands my friend – you make it or break it!!

Half hearted compromise decisions are not decisions at all; and this is the third leg of decision making that we often fail to appreciate. We are more often than not, guilty of this because we want the decisions to be palatable to all, we do not want to hurt anyone’s sentiments and we would like  to ensure that our image as being  fair and reasonable is maintained when we take the decision. The end result is that the decision taken is just a compromise and not a decision. In such cases the short term effects could be productive but in reality is a mirage and the long term implications could be disastrous.  Political decisions offer classic insights into this phenomenon.

Remember: “Theodore Hesburgh ‘s  advice  ‘My basic principle is that you don’t make decisions because they are easy; you don’t make them because they are cheap; you don’t make them because they’re popular; you make them because they’re right.”

Try these :

  • If you haven’t made and written down your New Year resolutions – take a decision and do it NOW. Don’t give any excuses for not attempting to list them out.. The more the resolutions the better it is for you – since you will have some direction and goals for the coming year. Outline how and when you propose to go about trying to achieve them. This will cement your resolve to achieve it. Notice how many decisions you made in the process.
  • Do you have any regrets in life? It could be the poor grades you got, a failed love affair, your inability to be an extrovert, Lack of friends, poor interpersonal relationships, your inability to forgive, your quick temper etc.  Do you think you have taken sufficient steps to try and overcome these? Are you still oscillating about the course of action to be taken? Do you have many excuses for those regrets and the accompanying bitterness or disenchantment?
  • Self discipline is a key attribute for success. Can you make a decision as to what areas in your life you need to exercise more self discipline? Ask yourself if you have a few friends who are actually a bad influence on you? If yes can you take up the challenge to distance yourself from them? If you have to seek help from someone experienced or more mature and have avoided it all these days, can you now decide to do it at the earliest?

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Bobby Jacob

Bobby Jacob

‘ He hopes to have a positive influence on his readers through his blog posts’

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