When is a decision not a decision?

1.When it’s a decision that has been made for us by our past decisions

Let’s look at an example.

Every decision we’ve made in the past affects the decisions we can make today. Sometimes, we won’t have a choice about our decision because we’ve already made decisions that have removed our options.

For example, if we’ve previously made a decision to save ten percent of our income, when faced with taking that big trip or buying that new house, there are a whole different set of options we have now that we wouldn’t have if we had never saved a dime.

But if you didn’t save some money, that was a decision, too.

Let’s say you have a project you really want to finish. It’s been sitting on the back burner for a long time. You’ve dabbled at it now and then but that’s it. Now, there’s a deadline. The project is going to be late. You are going to feel stressed. It could cost you your job. You made a previous decision to procrastinate.

Let’s agree, though, that we all face those last-minute decisions when we have no time to think through a decision. Think crisis, emergencies, that kind of thing.

I’m not talking about those.

I’m talking about decisions we could have made when we had the time to think them through.

We’ve all experienced buyer’s remorse. At least those are usually not life-altering decisions.

But they can be.

We bought a car we couldn’t afford and now we’re stuck with the payments which means there is something else we can’t afford. And that could be life-altering.

So many of our current decisions depend on past decisions. Those past decisions either open doors for future decisions or they take them away.

2. When a decision is automatic.

I’m all for making more decisions automatic in our life so we don’t spend too much energy on them. When we make decisions ahead of time about the routine things in our lives, we free up our energy for the times we do have to make a decision.

But I’m thinking about small things, like your morning routines, cleaning routines, care maintenance, house maintenance. These can and should become habitual.

The more we can put on autopilot because we’ve made the decisions to do so, the easier our lives become.

In this case, I’m suggesting that a no-decision, an automatic decision, can be a good thing. It takes the pressure off. Something as simple as having your clothes laid out for the next day makes the morning less stressful.

Having lunches packed, deciding to make the bed as soon as you get up, all of these take away the burden of making decisions when we’re starting our day.

I made the decision years ago that walking every day is not an option. Making that decision freed me up from deciding every day f I was going to walk or not. It also made it a habit, a really good habit.

3. When it’s the right thing to do.

When it’s the right thing to do, it shouldn’t be a decision.

Aren’t there many “right” decisions we know to make every day? Of course there are. We waste valuable time wondering about a decision when we know it’s the right thing to do all along.

It’s the right decision to put a shopping cart back in the cart corral.

It’s the right decision to use one’s manners.

It’s the right decision to be kind.

If we all realized we are making decisions all the time, we’d make better ones. I’ve certainly made my share of bad ones that have impacted the decisions I could make in the future.

I’ve wasted my time thinking through decisions I could’ve made automatic.

I’ve also spun my wheels about a decision I knew right along was the right thing to do.

It’s an area I need to improve and I think most other people do as well.

How about you?

Are you aware you are always making decisions?

Do you think you could do better?

I hope this post helped.

God bless and have a good day.

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