THE BLOG

Are You Asking the Right Questions?

02/03/2015 02:58 pm ET | Updated Apr 05, 2015

I used to describe myself as decisionally challenged (my own word to describe the times I was literally paralyzed by decision-making.) Whenever I had to make a choice I'd make all kinds of lists to help me figure out what was the "right" thing to do. Then I'd just stare at the paper and still not be able to make the decision! I hate that lost and frustrated feeling when you know something needs to change, but you don't know what or why or how.

The truth is, the lists never really helped me because more stuff in one column doesn't automatically equal the best option, because no two things on any list can be exactly, equally important. When we were trying to decide on a new school for my oldest, we had too many amazing choices (an excellent problem to have, really.) I kept getting stuck asking myself, "What's going to be best for him?" and couldn't choose. I was totally overwhelmed; there were lots of sleepless nights and even some tears. In hindsight, the real problem was that I wasn't asking the right question. How could I possibly look into the future and know what would be best for my kid for the next nine years? And how could I make a decision just for my oldest knowing that it would impact my youngest and the rest of us too?

When you're a parent you have to make lots of decisions. I haven't check the stats, but I'm guessing it's something like a million decisions every day and it can be exhausting! So it definitely helps to have short cuts to make things easier on yourself.

Here's what I've figured out:

1. First, decide on your deal-breakers and your priorities (the things you can't live with and you can't live without.)

2. There is no right decision. Once you've made a decision, you make it the right one.

3. If it's not working out, you can always start over and make a new choice.

4. Repeat as needed.

Once I changed my question about my son's school to "What's going to work best for our family?" and figured out the deal-breakers the choice was quick and clear and I felt confident and so relieved.

Try it yourself and let me know how it goes by leaving a comment below!