There are moments in life where we have to make the kind of decisions that can alter your path in huge ways. Learn how to deal with them here!
Over the past few weeks, I’ve had to make a huge decision. This decision could have resulted in my life changing direction in three possible ways. It was a huge, scary and a daunting task, figuring out what to do.
For me, making this choice would have resulted in three very different outcomes. Each one having pros and cons. Each one had the potential to take me on completely different paths through my life. Honestly, this has been one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make.
But now that I’ve done it, I am excited. I’m looking forward to my future and a new career. Everything is about to change and I’m on the cusp of it right now.
Sound familiar? Well! I’m going to help you out a bit.
How do you deal with such life choices? How do you know what the right thing to do? I’m hoping that by sharing my experience with you today, it’ll aid you in your quest to know what the right choice is. Learn from my mistakes and worries to help you make a better-informed decision.
A quick note for though before we get started – I can’t advise you on the best choice to make. I can only help guide and support you through it. Use this article as an outlet, as well as giving you the push you might need. Oh and don’t forget the handy copy of this post to download.
How to decide what to do
Making decisions on such a grand scale is hard work.
It takes a lot of energy, stress and sleepless nights. It can put a strain on you as well as others around you. You might not think this is true, but people notice more than you realise.
If you have a huge decision to make, deciding what the right choice is going to be a massive deal right now. It’s a big weight on your shoulders which you carry around with you. Until that deciding choice is made, that won’t every go away (trust me I know!).
Although I can’t tell you what choice to make, I can show you what I did to decide. This should be especially useful if you suffer from anxiety or another mental health issue. That’s the angle I’m going with today
Here are some helpful tips to prepare you for your decision. Hopefully, that’ll help you realise what the right choice is.
Consider the pros and cons of each choice
First and foremost, consider and analyse the pros and cons of each choice. This is probably the most important aspect of you decision making right now. For me, I had three directions I could have gone in. So in my case, I had three sets of lists.
To make your life a bit easier, I’ve created a nice handy worksheet for you to guide you! Print it out and scribble all over it:
I want you to feel capable of making your decision by the end of this!
So. Now that you have said sheet in tow, you can see that there are two columns. Each column is split into two sections to allow you to do your pros and cons. If you are in the same boat I was in, you can cut off the bottom of the sheet for your third direction.
The great thing about writing out your issues is that it helps you process your thoughts at the same time. Your thoughts become much clearer once they are on paper (or the do for me at least!). I find this so useful. It might work for you too.
Now start considering what pros you have for your decision. What do you think the good outcome of this decision will be? How will it improve your life? Consider whether it will affect anyone else around you, too. What about money, how will it impact that?
This is a really good way to break it down into simpler terms for you. Oftentimes these big decisions can pack a bit of weight behind them. Splitting it up into smaller chunks makes them more manageable.
Now then, how about the cons?
Will you be better off? Will it affect your pay? Will it mean longer hours at work? Try and think about all the possible outcomes of this decision. The more prepared you are now, the better you’ll feel about your decision.
Now that you have both pros and cons, you can start to consider the wider picture.
It’s time to spend time thinking about how your life will change because of your decision.
This point is more important to the mums out there. Big choices are much harder when you have children to think about and a home to maintain. Not only are you looking after yourself, but you have commitments that can’t be pushed to the side.
For today though I’m going to assume that this decision will improve the lives of others around you.
Let’s say for example you have to move house because you’ve had a better job offer. You will be working slightly longer hours but the pay makes up for it. You have children of a young age and aren’t at school yet.
Your partner/husband can easily make the move with you. You are able to afford the extra childcare for the extra hours you are working.
Looking at the wider picture, there are a lot of arguments for making the move. You will miss your friends and family a lot as you won’t be near them anymore. But you can keep in contact via social media and you drive, too.
Your job will be more fulfilling, but it will still be a HUGE change.
Everything would point towards changing jobs. Would you agree?
Coming to this decision though was only possible after considering all of the arguments for and against. Not only this but you are looking at what your future would look like rather than the short –term.
Here are some more helpful ideas:
Get some advice from your friends and family
I know that some of you find great solace in the advice from others. I find it actually quite difficult asking for help/advice! But sometimes you just have to do it.
Sometimes you have to let someone in and accept the help. After all, we are humans and we need human interaction sometimes!
If you’re struggling with making a big decision, ask someone who you think will be able to give you some good advice. Mums are always great for this!
If not your family, try your friends. If you don’t want to ask friends, you could always talk to someone online via forums/Facebook groups. There will definitely be somewhere to ask whatever you need and get an outsider’s point of view.
Lastly, you could approach your doctor. If this big decision is making you unwell through the stress of it, they may be able to refer to a more specific service. That’s how I got my CBT sorted. It helped me immensely.
The thing with a big decision is that it can be hard to cope on your own. Allowing someone in for help or advice will help you sort out the task in hand and gives you food for thought. Unfortunately, we aren’t always right!
Write down an action plan
Now that you’ve written down your pros and cons, as well as asking for a bit of advice, you should hopefully be closer to a decision. If you still feel like you aren’t 100% sure, feel free to email me! I’m always open to getting emails from my lovely readers and I will try and respond as soon as possible.
Oh and don’t forget your worksheets too. They are there to help guide you along the way. Just press the button below to get access:
The next step to work through is getting an action plan sorted.
Now I don’t mean a schedule where you know exactly what you are going to be doing when. Something which helps guide you through the necessary steps to putting your decision into action is what I mean.
Things don’t always work out as planned!
Doing this means you can plan ahead which will reduce the initial stress of coming to a conclusion. If you aren’t the planning type, just spend a bit of time thinking about it instead. Maybe even ask your partner/husband too if that helps.
Grab out that worksheet now.
Your action plan needs to include general milestones along the way.
For example, for me, I had the choice of three different job routes to go down. I wrote down how long I had to decide and when I would need to respond to them. I also considered what the risks of each job were and how these would impact me.
For you, it could be the same. Or it could be that your big project will take longer. You might need to consider other outcomes and other influences. Make a note of any people you need to speak to. Or any further information you might need. Make sure to write everything down.
Not only does this help you cement your choice, but it prevents further stress by now knowing what you are going to do.
Hopefully, by the end of this exercise, you will have a firmer grasp on your decision, and be on the way to making it happen.
All of that is how I came to my decision.
Just in case you were wondering, the choice I made was to leave the company I’ve been working for (for the last 4.5 years) and move on. The pay is still the same, and it means a slightly longer journey to work.
My con for leaving was that the experience I’ve gained here might be lost. I’m also going to miss all of my work colleagues A LOT. I might miss out on future promotions by essentially starting again.
But I feel like I’ve made the right choice now and am very excited for a fresh start. The company I am moving to is smaller and has a really nice family feel to it. I can’t wait.
Finally my lovely one – some things to remember (some cheesy sayings for you)
Things happen for a reason
In making this decision, just remember that everything happens for a reason. I never used to believe this, to be honest with you! But I do now.
Sometimes these life decisions are there to challenge you. They are there to send you off in a direction you never expected. Sometimes, the worst situations result in the best ones.
There is a reason why you are here today making this decision. Embrace it and enjoy the ride!
Whatever decision you choose to make – you did it for the right reason
Although you might be pulling your hair out trying to decide what the best choice is, always remember that you are doing it for the right reason.
Whilst you are still deciding/after you made your choice, don’t beat yourself up about it. What is done is done! There’s no use making your anxiety/stress/mental health worse following a situation list this. It just isn’t worth it.
Just remember that you are doing the best you can.
Nothing is ever permanent
Finally, even if you make a choice which you regret after, it can easily be changed. Nothing ever stays the same and you can change course if you want to. That job you decided to take? If you hate is you can apply for a new one. It just takes a little time.
I think a lot of the time these big decisions can feel like ‘all or nothing’. It makes you feel like your situation very black and white. But this is far from the truth.
In all honesty, it doesn’t have to be this way. If you change your mind, that’s fine.
You are a strong, confident and can do whatever you want to in life. You deserve it!
Missed the worksheet? Get it now:
How do you deal with big decisions that come your way? Do you have to think them through logically to be happy with your choice? Let me know now, I’d love to hear from you.