Making quick, effective decisions is the life-blood of a healthy, stress-free life. We often underestimate how challenging decision making can be, or how ineffectively we do it when we’re tired or overwhelmed. If you’ve ever procrastinated over a tiny decision (what birthday card do I choose for a friend?) or made a poor choice (I’m hungry… what shall I eat?… chocolate!), you’ll probably relate. So here are some techniques for better decisions I use with my clients:
1. Reduce the number of decisions you have to make during the day. If you spend an hour planning the week’s food, you can simply implement it at the time. Spend a bit of time planning weekend activities in advance, so you can just get on with it when it comes.
2. Limit your options. If you have a box of greetings cards at home, you can just choose one from there. Have a wardrobe purge, so you have only the things you really like, and know suit you.
3. Set aside time to make decisions when you know you won’t be exhausted. Conventional time management often suggests not looking at email first thing, but if you have to make lots of decisions as a result, such as answering staff, it might make more sense for you to clear it while you’re fresh. You may find it helpful to deliberately delay important family decisions until the weekend, if you find that evenings after a day of work leave you unable to think clearly.
What other techniques do you use to help you make better decisions quickly and easily?
Photo by jdurham at morguefile