In our work at The Center for Conscious Living and Fulfillment, clients often come to us after months or years of putting off critical decisions. Many of them are now standing right in the middle of a crossroads and need to make a decision about their business and their life– and fast.
Some of these decisions may be about transferring and/or exiting their business, letting a long-time leader go, having a difficult conversation with a family member in the business, working on succession and estate planning, etc. All these things that get labeled as “important but not urgent” but have been put off for so long, that the consequences of putting them off have started to show. They may be starting to see challenges in their relationships at home with spouses or children, unhealthy habits in their organization, unhappy and disengaged employees, even personal health problems.
Making critical decisions is never easy. In fact, it can often be the cause of some major stress and fear if we are not navigating the decision consciously. We put off making decisions in our business and personal lives for many reasons. We want to avoid the discomfort of change. We keep kicking the can down the road to put out more immediate fires. We tell ourselves that things will work out on their own, and that we don’t need to take any action…YET. This is the big illusion.
The truth is, if you have a crossroads coming up in your future, it is never too early for some level of preparedness. To start, we must first uncover the stories we are telling ourselves, and what part of “staying put” is still serving us. Below are three steps to start making critical decisions in alignment with that you truly value. Decisions that will create more peace and joy in your life.
Step One: Uncovering stories and illusions.
So much of what causes us to delay making decisions is tied to stories that– in actuality– are not reality. In my studies over the past several decades in healing causes of procrastination, anxiety, personal development, self mastery, etc., one of the most impactful things that I have learned is how we actually create our reality based on the stories we tell ourselves. These stories become our blind spots, because– without the help of someone to point them out to us– we cannot see past what we have been programmed to believe.
Another piece of this step is uncovering how the lack of decision making is still serving us in some way. Is it comfort? Maybe preserving a relationship? Keeping the peace? In the end, what might seem like the short term benefits of procrastination are far out-weighed by the positive changes that will come long-term from making a decision tied to what you truly value.
Step Two: Identify your core values.
If someone asked you right now for the top 3 values that you live by, would you know what they are? Would you know how they tie into your day-to-day life? Are these values also clearly identified and woven into your business?
For most people, the answer to this is no. How then, would you measure your decisions? With core values being brought into your decision making process, you have a clear way to make critical decisions. My personal core values are my relationship with God, family, and personal heath and wellness. With this clarity I am able to ensure that any decision I make for myself or my business always supports these values for myself and for my clients.
Step Three: Get clarity on your vision for the future.
The third step is critical. You absolutely must know where you see yourself in the future and what you truly want in order to make critical decisions that will support that vision. This can be difficult for some because it requires being honest with yourself about where you are currently, and what you want for the future. This step is NOT about what any outside societal ideas of success tell you that you should do or have. It’s about uncovering your deepest desires so that you can create a life and business around your purpose and your truth.
For me, this step was pivotal in making the decision to leave my corporate job of over 25 years. By creating a very detailed vision for every department of my life, I could see that I needed to prioritize more freedom and flexibility in my life and more time with my wife and daughter among other things. I wanted to be able to work from anywhere in the world and create amazing experiences for my family. With your vision as your guide, decision making becomes clear very quickly.
For many people, the last couple years have presented some of the most challenging decisions of their lives. With this comes the opportunity to grow, develop, heal and create a more peaceful life experience for ourselves.
If there is a major decision looming for you and you would like perspective, please reach out. Always here to help.