Instead of thinking about what physical goals you want to reach (lose 20 pounds, make six figures, buy a house), you think about the why of these things. How do you think they're going to make you feel (maybe sexy, wealthy, secure)? You'll discover a whole bunch of other ways to achieve those feelings.
Getting exactly what we want is rare. Usually it's give and take. Conflicting interests make it necessary to bargain constantly. However, we also haggle with ourselves when no one else is around to limit our options -- often unconsciously. As behavioral scientists tell us, even under the best of circumstances, smart and regrettable choices balance each other out over time.
I've found that once I've made a major decision, it wasn't as scary as I thought it was, and I wonder what too me so long. When you step outside your unhappiness, you find that there is a life and it is there for the taking. It is just getting over that first hurdle of making a move and once you've jumped that... you can win. You can get ahead.
It's exhausting, this constant pressure that exists in the "real world." We're making decisions today that outline the rest of our lives. The choices we make now help us discover who we are, what we want in life, where we live and what people we want to spend our time with. How do you know which path is best? The truth is, you don't.
In our work lives, we are constantly asking questions, evaluating our options, and making decisions. This swirl of considerations can be overwhelming at times, and with so many questions to ask it can be hard to know which is more important. The most important career question you'll ever ask is only three letters long, but packs one heck of a punch. The question is...why?
If you find yourself overwhelmed or stuck in making a financial decision, look inwards. This hesitance is a sign that there is an underlying issue you're struggling with. It can also mean that you are not considering the proper context. Are you too focused on the future and forgetting about today? Are you living according to your value system? Or conversely, are you so fearful of the future that you won't look at it and you live only for today? Either way, you're avoiding the real issue.
The fact is that life does not give us the luxury of avoiding decisions; it does not allow us to simply get by without ever taking a stand. In being called upon to act -- with actions, by definition, being black-and-white -- we are called upon to inherently make clear-cut decisions. You do, or you do not. There is no middle possibility of acting and not-acting at the same time. In action, a definite choice must be made.
Antonio Damasio, (2003, Looking for Spinoza) the renowned neuroscientist, has demonstrated the important role of emotions in decision-making. When we insist on removing emotions from our decisions, we are ignoring the emotional part of our decision-making process. Why do we choose to avoid emotion, especially in a business or professional setting?