How to Stop Making Bad Decisions. Avoid Crippling Setbacks

Amy Christie

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Things have been spiraling downward lately and you’re wondering what’s sabotaging you? It might just be your mindset. Learn how to start avoiding bad decisions and bring success and optimism back into your life.

Every day you take thousands of decisions. Some may be trivial such as choosing what to eat for meals, deciding what clothes to buy, or where to go for walks. But others can change the course of your life such as marriage, starting a family, or moving to a new place.

The choices you make can bring you contentment or can cause frustration and make you upset. If you find yourself thinking about the choices you made in the past and regretting many of them it’s time you changed your strategy. Don’t expect to make only the right decisions from now on. You will continue to have irrational moments and make unusual choices sometimes.

However, with the right approach you can win in most situations and understand the reasoning behind the few doubtful choices you will make in specific moments. Getting a handle on what’s going on and being in touch with your feelings will result in progress and satisfaction so you can move forward and grow on all levels.

Here is what lurks behind the decisions you would rather take back:

1. Taking the wrong mental shortcuts

You try to find a good deal for a blouse, you go on your neighbor’s advice on what’s the best price and end up with an expensive one anyway? Searching for a new car cand you’re headed for one that’s not such a good deal just because you heard several coworkers say it’s the best? Don’t let the things you hear or see influence you too much.

If you start out anchored in the wrong bias you will easily end up getting a thing you don’t really want or paying for it a lot more than you should. Set your own criteria for choosing what you need and decide on your own what is set in stone and what you can live without. Priorities will not be the same for everyone.

Colors may be the deciding factor for some people, the price could be the one and only target point, or you could wish for comfort and safety more than anything else. Each choice is right for the person who makes it. But if you mix the wrong criteria with the wrong person there will be confusion and poor choices. Go forth based on what you want, not what others think is important or necessary.

You can’t be content if you live your life according to other people’s standards. Your wants matter just as much if not more. This is the only real way to be genuinely satisfied with the decisions you make and get closer to what you want in life.

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2. Getting caught in a tsunami of information

Even though communication and information are the center of our busy lives, being online all the time can backfire. Don’t spend all your time on social media, checking emails, or watching videos.

It pays to unplug, take a mental step back and view the choices you have to make from a neutral perspective. Too often some choices seem obvious just because of the things you see in posts or comments.

After spending a bit of time on your own, away from the online stream of information, you might actually decide you don’t want the things all the users are talking about or that you are interested in less popular items. And that’s ok. You don’t have to get only the most sought-after items. Create your comfort space with the things you value.

Whether someone else likes them or not shouldn’t matter that much. You are the one who will be using them daily. Make sure your wishes are not driven by social media and you will end up a lot happier and satisfied overall.

3. Being overly optimistic

Contrary to popular belief, over-the-top optimism tends to fuel wrong decisions. It pays to give due importance to risks when buying something or choosing a course of action. If you always ignore the chance of unpleasant effects, they will not be diminished. Instead, they could happen on the spot and you will be confused and hurt.

Don’t ignore both sides of the issue when deciding and don’t get to think that bad things can only happen to other people. It’s not about going through life thinking about tragedies. Instead, you should measure the odds carefully and set out to choose safe and useful options for the long run. You are just as susceptible to good events as to bad ones.

Don’t exaggerate any of them and you will end up in the right place. Once you feel you weighed all the cons and that they’re something you can live with or have a working strategy ready for them, go on and do whatever it is you want.

You will be more confident knowing you are prepared for anything. Hope is good and essential, but you can avoid stress by considering the possible odds against you in advance.

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4. Bringing in strong emotions

Try to take a decision as clear-headed as possible. If you make a choice when you are upset, annoyed, frustrated, sad, or overjoyed you might end up regretting it later. Emotions are fundamental in our lives. However, you need to avoid crucial decisions when you experience peak moments.

Extreme emotions will reduce your ability to focus on all sides of an issue and you can go for arguments that wouldn’t have much weight when you are calm and collected. It’s better to walk away for a bit, enjoy the happy smiles, and next day get back to what you wanted to make a decision on.

5. Multi-tasking fatigue

When you try to do too many things at once you can drive yourself into decision paralysis. Don’t juggle work responsibilities, organizing events, house chores, family life, socializing, and online activities at the same time you have to make a choice.

You will feel exhausted and confused. It will become increasingly difficult to guide your decision in any direction and all arguments will seem boring and irrelevant. If you get to the point where you don’t see the appeal of any side of the matter you need to take a break. Decision fatigue will make your choices blurry, contradictory, and illogical.

Your decisions affect your relationships, health, comfort, and wellbeing. Don’t go for fast choices that will make you unhappy. Take the time to make the right choices and you will have more energy and power to achieve your dreams

Don’t ignore how you feel and don’t bring other people into it. You will only be content when your actions are connected to your thoughts. And every decision you make is a step towards your future. Don’t allow it to go nowhere. Direct it where your goals await and meet the brighter you!

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Amy Christie is a passionate writer and journalist, always striving to bring out the positive and create meaningful connections.

Dallas, TX
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