Indecision is a decision within itself. In life, we find ourselves making and avoiding decisions on a daily basis. Everytime we make a decision, we worry about the results, we worry about what we may have done wrong or how it could've been better.
Hindsight is 20/20 and there's no going back in time. Understanding mistakes as acceptable casualties of life is part of seeing the big picture. When we fail to make decisions we find ourselves making a decision anyway, usually with the remnants of what may have been a superior opportunity.
I've often laughed at the phrase "Good things come to those that wait". Good things do not come to those that wait. If good things came to the those that wait you would buy airplane tickets last minute, apply for college the day school starts, and buy batteries after the black out.
Ironically, we find ourselves making small decisions much more complicated than they need to be. People pour over a menu trying to figure out what they're going to have, desperately asking the waiter what they should order. And after the waiter does give his opinion, half of the time people order something else anyway. It doesn't really matter what you have for lunch or dinner. Lunch will be here again tomorrow and every other day thereafter, yet we put so much thought into it.
Bigger decisions are often harder because we don't have a waiter standing there expecting us to put in our order. We find ourselves putting decisions off.
The most successful people in the world have a common trait, they make decisions quickly. This doesn't mean that every decision they make is right or even good. But they make the decisions they make accepting the good and learning from the bad, while most people are still considering what to try.
I've had so many people tell me that they want to be on Shark Tank. I always ask them when they have applied, typically the answer I get back is: "not yet".
Your chances go up 100% the moment you apply, yet people still sit on the fence and wonder what it would be like rather than finding out.
There's three things you can do to make sure your decisions are made in a timely, yet careful way.
1. Ask yourself, "Does it matter?" It may sound silly but the more time we dedicate to meaningless decisions, such as what we're ordering for lunch or what color tie were going to put on each morning, the less time we have to focus on the real decisions in life.
Mind over matter, if you don't mind it doesn't matter.
2. Make a decision tree. For people who are just getting used to the idea of making decisions quickly it may help to create a physical decision tree on a piece of paper with a pen and write down your options and go through a binary sequence to get to the answer.
Simply match up each item and pick which you prefer, eliminating the less desirable option. Continue this until you arrive at one option, then make that your decision.
3. "Don't worry, be happy" Listen to Bobby McFerrin, he knows what he's talking about. Don't be afraid of failure, be afraid of not trying. I've never met a person who doesn't make mistakes. If you're expecting that for yourself you're going to be bitterly disappointed. Learn from your mistakes along with your successes and you'll be a better, more experienced individual.
Make no mistake, I've made a mistake every day of my life and I don't plan on stopping anytime soon. As experience grows, the size of your mistakes will diminish. There is a certain point where they will be indiscernible by others due to how small they become, but you will still make them.
Whenever you see a person that seems truly successful, realize it's all been built on the backs of failure, loss, disaster, and risk. Welcome to The Nate State of Mind.