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  • Writer's pictureWarrick

A powerful reminder about decision making

What if my decision backfires and I end up making things worse?

Hello fellow Protagonists,

When we have big decisions to make it can be very difficult to decide and follow up on an action because the consequences can feel pretty big.

What if we end up making a situation worse or end up regretting the decision when it is too late to backtrack?

This was a challenge I was facing last week and I want to offer you all a piece of advice that was given to me as it really helped ground my thinking. It could also help those of you in similar situations.

I had a phone call with a lady who told me that she knows somebody in their 40's who had cashed in their life saving back at the end of last year in order to start a business. With Covid-19 and subsequent lock-downs this unfortunate person is now on the cusp of losing that business and all of their investment they had built over their lifetime.

All in the space of a single year. Think about that for a moment.

What may have felt like a brilliant idea last year has suddenly turned into a situation none of us would want to be facing. I bet there are many other people in this boat and my thoughts go out to you.

So does this mean that this person's initial decision to start their own business was a bad one?

Well... no, not really. even though it may feel like it.

The lady on the phone reinforced to me that all we can really do is go with what we think is the best option with the information we have at the time.

Who on earth was to know something like Covid would happen this year?

Nobody. With all the market research and forecasting available this would have been missed.

What we have to do is take the facts that we have right now and use that information to base a decision. That decision can always be to obtain more information if we do not feel we have enough (as long as we are not using this a delaying strategy).

The matter is that any of our decisions could potentially lead to a negative outcome, however right they feel at the time. This also means that any one of our decisions could also turn out to be the best ones we ever made!

"It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed" - Theodore Roosevelt

We have to put ourselves out there in order to see if a decision turns out to be a good experience or a bad experience and that takes real courage.

Remember that doing nothing is also a decision so there is no hiding from making decisions on our tough problems.

In a way this knowledge is liberating, we are not expected to know the true extent of an outcome from our decisions. We can apply some past experience with a bit of guesswork though assuming that the same outcome will occur twice from a similar situation is dangerous.

So with this advice I can make my decision with the knowledge and values I have right now and be comforted in the fact that this was the best I can offer.

What will be will be.

I haven't named the person as I didn't tell them I was going to make this post. I thank them for reminding me about this key lesson and I hope you have also taken something from this post.

Show some courage and make your decision.

GLHF (Good Luck Have Fun)


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