So what can we do to clear our minds of all the stress and anxiety and just make up our minds already? Thankfully, there are actual strategies we can use to guide us in making important choices. Here are some suggestions:
- Instead of letting it nag you, set an “appointment” to consider your choices. You could set, for example, one half hour every day to think only about the decision, and leave the rest of the day for normal life.
- Brainstorm different possibilities. Ask friends and family for their input. Let yourself be creative, writing down every possibility.
- Write lists of pros and cons.
- Visualize the results of different choices and see how they make you feel.
- Listen to that “gut feeling”. If something just doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.
- If necessary, give yourself more time. Sometimes we are simply not ready to make a decision. If you find you’re taking too long, however, you may want to consider giving yourself a deadline.
- Distract yourself by thinking about something else if it becomes too overwhelming. Your mind may get “over-heated”.
- Know that things are not always black and white. Two choices can be equally appealing.
- Do things you enjoy, like taking a walk or listening to a favorite song; the answer may come to you when you are relaxed.
Finally, when you make that decision, try not to think about it anymore. Regret is pointless; you have to make the best of the choice you’ve made. But also know that, if necessary, many decisions are reversible. (You don’t have to stay at a job you hate forever, for example.) Sometimes you just have to take a deep breath, grab the bull by the horns…then let him go free!