Failing to make a decision is a decision: We all have decisions in our life that we make. Some are easy and some hard. We could all agree that some decisions are really really hard, right? But what are the consequences of not making a decision? What happens when we neglect the inevitable? Here are a few things I have observed that can happen. In an organization there can be fear, anxiety, concern, etc. In an organization there can be positioning and posturing from people, this alone can have a negative impact on those that have to live with the results of a decision, or in this case a lack of a decision. What happens if you fail to make a decision to get your car engine light checked? There could be a simple fix. That simple fix that you neglected to make the decision to get checked could turn into a major fix that can cost you a lot more money in the long run. If you don’t make the decision to have the hard conversation with your spouse about money and finances because you are afraid of what could come from it. Over time the neglect and anxiety can take its toll on your health, and obviously ultimately could put your family in financial ruin. There are times when I know I need to make a decision and for some reason I procrastinate on the decision too long, which is actually making a decision. What I know is this, when I make a decision I can then move on to the next decision that needs to be made, this is called progress.
A wealth of information creates a poverty of attention: Now more than ever we have information everywhere don’t we? If we aren’t looking at our smart phones we are deleting the hundreds of emails that we actually signed up to receive filling up our inbox of our several email accounts that we have. Does this sound about right? If you watch TV for a minute or turn on the radio in your car, you will get bombarded with information and ads. Google is now a verb and the chances that you googled something in the last 24 hours is more probable than you actually exercising. All of the information and access of information has created a great opportunity for us to know more, but it has created a bigger opportunity for us to be distracted and unfocused. Last week this poverty of attention on the things that matter most, prevented me from moving forward in the things that matter more than some of the other things I pursued. I am getting back on track and eliminating some of the information that I receive that is preventing me from focusing on what I should be giving my full attention to.
Assume you don’t know the whole story. This is not something I learned personally by doing, although I have been here before. No, this makes the list this week because I watched it happen. Have you ever become emotionally charged about a situation or an interaction with someone personally that you later found out that you didn’t have the whole story? Maybe it included you being mad at someone or something because of what someone told you, but you didn’t have the context of the whole picture? Come on, it happens all of the time. What I have learned before jumping to conclusions or getting emotionally charged and making myself look stupid, I have to get the whole story. Yep, understand the whole story. Sure you know the side you have heard or actually experienced, but before you go down the road of making assumptions or in some cases, accusations, be sure you know the whole story.
To your success and your future.