We all have to make decisions every day.
Multiple times a day.
Most are automatic and you don’t think about them. You simply follow the trajectory of your business or life.
Other times, you need to change a habit that no longer serves you or your business. Or you are required, for various reasons, to change your trajectory in a bigger way—
Maybe it is time to…
- Step outside your comfort zone to expand your business
- Move from one city to another or even change countries
- Embrace an exciting, yet scary, opportunity to start your own business
- Make space in life for the sudden illness, birth or death of a loved one
- Pivot your business so you need to fit “learning a new skill” into an already over busy life.
- Create a new website
You get the idea. BIG decisions.
By choice or not—it is still a decision
We might be forced into making a decision through outer circumstances imposed on us. Or be prompted by an inner calling to make a big decision and jump off the cliff.
Regardless of how you arrive at the cliff edge, generally, to succeed you need to take a step back from the edge before you leap.
While the weight of all decisions is not equal, when it comes to your business, building a website that reflects you, your business and values is often a roller coaster ride.
It is important to take time to see and acknowledge your emotions, especially the hidden ones, behind the big decision. This is where Primility is helpful.
Primility is a word created by Jerod Morris who writes, “I feel the most consistently fulfilled when I bring pride and humility into balance — embracing the positive impact each feeling can have while working with intention to minimize their potential negative impacts.”
The general tendency for many Of us, when faced with a big decision is—to panic.
As a teenager, I trained to be a lifeguard. One key lesson I learned during the training—use a flotation device to rescue someone. A drowning person is—well, I think it is safe to say—is panicked.
Even though they want to be rescued, if you swim to them, their panic can drown you before you are able to get them safely to solid ground.
They simply can’t see clearly enough to make the right decision. This is where the power of the flotation device helps.
How to stay afloat even when uncertain
Often times, when faced with a big decision, while we may not be physically drowning, we can still feel uncertain or panicked. We want to make the best decision and we don’t know which is the right one. So like a drowning person, we flail about.
This is when Primility can be a flotation device.
When you throw a floatation device to a drowning person, she has something to grab onto for support. She is then able to slowly stop flailing about, take a breath, get calmer and make a better decision. In her case—to relax enough to be rescued.
When faced with a big or uncomfortable decision, you have the opportunity to practice Primility—balancing your pride and humility—as a way to see more clearly.
A way to find clarity? Before you go shopping, make a list
To be certain you buy what you need while at the store, you check for ingredients and make a list. You can use this same approach to find clarity about your BIG decision. You can take time to make a list, except this time, you are shopping inside yourself.
Making a list by yourself is fine. Better yet, ask someone you trust to help. Often others see you in ways you can’t see yourself. This extra support gives a bigger perspective.
- List your strengths and weaknesses as they relate to the BIG decision.
- Make another list of any perceived positive or negative thoughts about the situation and your pending decision.
- Then, find the opposites of all your emotional (positive and negative) states and write them down too.
The lists will likely include strong emotional words,
including aspects of pride on the one side and humility on the other.
Seeing your thoughts and emotions on paper (or computer)—the idea being to get them out of your head—creates a flotation device. Acknowledging your emotional states by writing them down makes them less scary. They are no longer hidden. And the panic subsides.
An example list
- I don’t think I have what it takes to do…
- I’m afraid I will fail at the new job, task, position or?
- I feel powerless to change
- I don’t have enough authority or credentials
- I can do “x”, though I’m not good at “y”, which I believe is required to succeed (while this maybe true in this moment…you can most likely learn “y”)
- I’m pissed and it is not my fault that I’m getting fired, laid off, transferred or?
- I was not appreciated for all that I have done
- I’ll show them. I don’t need my ex-boss/team for anything
- I know how to do this and don’t need help from anyone
- I need to hide this “shameful event” from those I love
The process helps you to find your center between strong polarized emotions—the balanced state of Primility. Primility offers you the clarity and support you need to make your next decision, maybe not with ease, though easier.
You may still feel panicked. However, there will be a calm, balanced space for at least a moment. And sometimes a moment is all that is required to allow you to gain enough perspective to make a better decision.
How do you find balance amid uncertainty or when facing a BIG decision?
I’d love to hear your favorite way to find balance and how it helped you make a better decision in the comments below.
And if you are feeling wobbly—hey, we’re all tipsy at times. Share your current musings as you never know, having the courage to share “out loud” just might help you find your balance again.