Sunday, 25 August 2013

How to Improve Decision Making Skill

My friend asked me whether I have any advice on how to improve decision-making skill. And I started asking myself these:

How good am I in making decisions? Had I been making good decisions in the past? 

One word stared straight at me. FAILURES.

Failures = Bad Decisions. There have been many big failures in my life. It took me a long while to recuperate - mentally and emotionally.

But I had a better equation now. Failures = Decision to Learn = Courage to make mistakes. Yes, I have chosen at many times to learn the hard lessons from the bumpy roads in my life.

I had made decision in my past to learn the lessons from life. But now, I have made a decision to win and to love. So my friend's question came just right on time as I also need to improve my decision making skills.

Here are a few decision making strategies that I feel can help.

1. OOC/EMR Decision Making Process from Anthony Robbins

I never quite get down to try this decision making process. But in terms of making big and important decisions, I think it is good to go through this process.

2. From the book "Blink" by Malcolm Gladwell. 

I am not advocating to make decision in a blink - the power of thinking without thinking, the first two seconds decision making or the gut feeling. But this gives us a very good perspective. Sometimes, we already have made a decision in a blink. But we somehow tell ourselves we need more data. Perhaps, it is really good to trust our gut feelings. Perhaps not - it really depends on our level of mastery and the circumstances.

What really stands out for me in "Blink" is a study done on married couples, where they videotaped their conversations. From there, they used the different criteria to predict whether the couple would divorce in years to come. There are certainly a lot of things that can make or break a marriage, but the result was astonishing. It just came down to one criteria - whether the couples have contempt for each other.

My point is there are massive data and thousands of criteria for us to make decision, but usually the key important criteria is just a handful. And that's what we need to focus on. The rest is just noises and are not really important.

I used to break off with a guy because we just seem not able to get together well. Then, I asked both of us to envision how our old age will look like. I envision an old man and old woman lovingly holding hands walking together. He envision an old man alone, sitting on a chair, being at peace. That tells a lot about his value system and my value system in terms of partnership in life. Neither is right or wrong, but to be together, our values system has to align with each other.

3. Is it Love or is it Fear?

From A Course In Miracles and Return to Love (Mariane Williamson), I learn that a lot of things we do and decision we make, either we are driven by love or driven by fear.

Why do we not do the work we love?
Why do we stop from taking that action which will bring good change to our life?
Why do we stop going to the gym, eating healthy food and getting enough sleep?

All I am saying is use LOVE to make the decision instead of fear, and as Paulo Coelho put it, once we make the decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.

Love itself is a decision. We make decision to love ourselves and others, to be happy, to heal and be healed, to change.

Fear is the darkness. Love is the light. We do not get to the light through endless investigation of the darkness. The only way to the light is through entering the light. (From A Return To Love)

Albert Einstein famously proclaimed "No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it". It means that if we are to make a decision of a problem solving at the same state when we created the problem in the first place, we will never be making a good decision. When we create the problem, we are in the darkness or in the fear. Thus, we need to go to light and the love to make the decision on how to solve it.

So, let's our decision-making to be driven by love, instead of fear.

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