Tackling BIG Decisions

The Thought

BIG decisions that come up in our everyday lives usually start as just a thought in our heads.  A “What if” or “How Come.”  You quite possibly got the idea from reading about someone else doing, or seeing a friend do it. 

For instance, a lot of my friends are starting to buy their first homes right now.  It becomes a snowball effect.  One person does it, and everyone seems to latch on and want home ownership. 

So we start thinking about the BIG decision, start doing research, and start talking with others about what they think is the best decision.  This is all part of the process and it can be extremely fun, or extremely frustrating depending on what you make of it.

Having Fun with BIG

As we are amidst our research and thought about the BIG decisions we face in our lives, there are 3 things that can help us determine if making this decision is going to be worth it for you.

1.  Pros vs. Cons – Write down Pros vs. Cons.  Try to come up with 10 of each.  It’s usually somewhat apparent which side you are leaning towards when writing these down.  My advice is to try not to lean too far one way or the other when writing these down.  Make this fun.  Think of anything and everything that could be a positive or negative.

2.  Identify the Worst Possible Outcome – Identifying the worst thing that could happen makes the decision easier.  If the worst possible outcome has a decent chance of happening, this decision should be a no.  But, if the worst possible outcome really isn’t that bad in the big scheme of things, I think we can chalk one up for the yes side.

3.  Regret – Would you regret NOT doing this now, 5 years down the road?  It’s easy to look back on our lives and find things that we regret not doing.  I want to make the goal of not having these regrets in 5 years.  If you are deciding to buy your first home – Ask yourself “In 5 years will I regret NOT buying a home right now?”

So we have 3 things to consider.  At least two of these are going to match.  That should give you an answer to your BIG Decision.  Remember to have fun with the decision making process and try not to stress about it too much.

Post BIG Decision Making  

You are always going to have thoughts creep into your head saying “Was this really the right decision?”  This is normal.  This is a part of consumer behavior.  If you studied Marketing in college, you likely had an entire course solely dedicated to how consumers behave in the marketplace.

If you are second guessing your decision.  Go back through the 3 ideas up above.  Pros vs. Cons, Worst possible outcome, and Regret.  Hopefully this will bring some clarity to your “post BIG decision” making process.

Dan 5/7/11

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About danholterhaus

I explore creative strategies to help others achieve success
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