I have a hard time making decisions. I don't know why I struggle with it so. I think I just don't want to make a mistake -- do the wrong thing then regret it. It has always been important to me to do the right thing. But how do you know what the right thing IS?
When I was younger, I remember my mother sitting down with me and teaching me a popular method for making decisions. She took out a piece of notebook paper and drew a line down the middle. On one side she wrote "pros" and on the other she wrote "cons." She explained to me what this meant. Then we started writing things down in the columns. I don't remember what dilemma was troubling me, but I remember this exercise.
And I remember it left me feeling a bit empty. I had a lot written on one side, and not a lot written on the other, and yet something in my heart was telling me to go with the side that had the least things written, which was exactly the opposite of what the exercise was supposed to accomplish. This, of course, confused me even more. I didn't understand at the time what this meant.
That exercise was all about logic. What looked "right" on paper. This became my standard for decison making and I think this might be where I lost the ability to listen to my gut and follow my heart. And that is funny because when it comes to anything else, I live mostly by my heart. I try to be logical, but in the end my heart usually wins out. In making big decisions though, I still struggle.
I have an important decision to make in my life right now. The pros and cons are weighing heavily upon me. I think I feel my heart steering me in the direction I need to take, but I'm still uncertain. It's not logical, what my heart says. It goes against my sensibilities. One day I wake up and think, "Okay, I know the answer. This is what I'm going to do." Then the next day, I wake up feeling just the opposite. It's driving me crazy! And this is my typical pattern.
So I'm doing what I always do. I talk to people. I ask their opinion. I ruminate on what they have to say. And, as always, the opinions vary and they ALL make sense! Everyone has a good point. And I suppose, in the end, all this talking only buries my heart's voice even deeper
I also pray. I ask God to steer me in the right direction. "Tell my heart what to do. SHOW ME PLEASE!" Why can't God just yell in my ear, "Do this dummy!" Why does He have to be so secretive?
I often wish life was like that insurance commercial. The one where the green line shows up and all you have to do is follow it to go in the right direction.
Fear. Change. Consequences. The unknown. All factors in making important decisions. I guess in the end it's about listening to your gut and then taking that leap of faith. Not always playing it safe. The right thing for you might not be the right thing for someone else. Maybe the choice won't seem practical or responsible. I suppose that isn't what is important in the end. It's about opening up a space in your life for good things to come in. Letting go of what isn't working for you. Life doesn't come with a blueprint. I wish it did!
What guides you in your decision making?