Updated: Nov 2, 2021
“Trust your instincts and make judgements on what your heart tells you.
The heart will not betray you.” - David Gemmell
“On an important decision one rarely has 100% of the information needed for a good decision no matter how much one spends or how long one waits. And, if one waits too long, he has a different problem and has to start all over. This is the terrible dilemma of the hesitant decision maker.” - Robert K. Greenleaf
Life forces us to make decisions! Regardless of whether we choose to face this truth or not, our future inevitably becomes decided and defined by the decisions that we make or the decisions that we choose not to make! Furthermore, it can be inferred by example that by not choosing, we are actually making a choice!
When we don’t choose, we are choosing not to take a stance or not to fight for something. We are choosing not to associate, and, in this lull, we allow fate to take its course. Time is wasted, people move on and others are turned away. Life will accept an answer from the act of inaction! So, what is the right decision? Should we wait to make it? How do we know what the right choices are? What side should we take?
The great general Norman Schwarzkopf once told a story about a lesson that he learned from a previous general and mentor of his. After questioning his superior about the speediness of his decision-making skills regarding the politics of war, it was culminated as an answer that decisions are power and that the only real failure lies in failing to decide. An immense issue that had been quarreled and pondered over for ten years was suddenly decided and acted upon by this one general within seconds.
With so much to consider in front of him and so much on the line, how could this man be so decisive? How could he make such a quick choice? Schwarzkopf’s superior iterated that indecisiveness associated with making a perfect choice often clouds the importance of simply deciding one way or the other. If the choice is right he mentioned, then there will be no issue. If the choice is wrong, however, one will find out quickly and they can then make the necessary adjustments to move forward in accuracy.
The point of importance here is that when tried or called to the pulpit, real leaders put themselves on the line and make decisions even when it is difficult to do so. As a leader of ourselves and our own lives, we are called involuntarily to make decisions! By doing so decisively and with integrity, we can step foot in the right direction. If we have the courage to look deep within ourselves and truthfully answer the honest yet difficult questions that remain, we can arm ourselves with righteous minded ammunition. If we remain cautious and aware of our own impulsive tendencies while thinking rationally, we can improve our own lives and at the same time make this world a better place.
It will then be beneficial, that we in regards to making choices, stop holding ourselves back in caution and rather decide on a certain direction to travel. Could it be true at times that the best choice is to not make a choice? Could it be possible that the smart decision is to wait and to see how things play out? Sure, but recognize that by choosing this course you have already taken a stance and you may have to live with this consequence!
Time can be a sensitive fore bearer. It may be too late by the time you come around to know and do what is right! Bruce Lee once quoted that “mistakes are always forgivable, if one has the courage to admit them”. We all make mistakes at times and nobody is perfect, we must accept this fact and carry forward bravely. We must acknowledge and be okay with the fact that we will fail as it is through failing and learning that we will grow!
Choosing to wait or choosing not to choose can come back to bite us in the ass if done so with too much consideration. Life is short, our window for action usually doesn’t stay open forever, so think firmly about what you choose not to decide upon! Understand the difference between living with a choice and living with the knowledge that you decided not to make one! Unfavorable outcomes can usually be tolerated so much as a choice was known at heart and believed to be the right one. It is here most importantly that we must be real and do our best to balance out what may come of such a choice and then simply to make it!
Right decisions should be filtered through the honest truth. What you know in your heart of hearts to be right is usually on point, yet for some reason or another, there remains those who choose to act against what their conscience tells them! Fear, lack of trust or love of self, laziness, delusion, and selfish lusts have all proved to be common reasons for inaction or ignorance concerning proper decision making. In reflection of this, there is proof that courage, rationality, decisiveness, humility, and honor are often associated with one who stands to make the truthful choice.
It can be plain to see that what one values and what stands as most important to an individual should dictate most of their significant decisions and choices. Hence the distortion in a motive of the selfish and egotistical as they often seem to solely care about themselves and they usually disregard how their choice may negatively affect the world around them.
All that matters to the ego minded spirit is how the outcome of a decision can quench their selfish desires, yet the individuals who remain outside of this realm, will look deep within themselves and choose to analyze a decision based on morality. The individual with honor asks the question “who am I and where am I looking to go?” “What do I honestly and truly believe in?” “How can I make a choice that reflects my moral values and makes those around me better and safer?”
Prior to each choice man is faced with a silent agreement and when faced with this settlement, his convictions must be stronger than the comfort of the low road. Those bold souls who choose to make courageous decisions believe in something greater! They are convinced by something bigger within themselves or within the universe and it arms them with strength in their triumph! perhaps it is a moral code or a standard to follow, yet the importance of what we believe in and who we truly believe ourselves to be is so often disregarded in the modern day.
Making the sometimes hard yet necessary decision is a must for those seeking to live a life of truth, honor, worth, and meaning. Knowing this fact, should prioritization then not lay as the blueprint in decision making? If one could dig deep and reflect on who they truly are and on what matters to them most, will they not then be better apt to make a decision that is true to themselves and in alignment with their values?
Before one acts would it not be beneficial to consider how this decision, they are about to make is honestly going to affect their future as well as that of their family, their team, and their friends? Decide to be the master of your own court! Live by the decisions that you make rather than the decisions that you do not! Become one with truth and integrity! Make the decision to turn away from selfish and egotistical tendencies while seeking to choose upon the morally right choice!