How to Overcome Indecisiveness and Gain Confidence

I dislike shopping with my wife because she’ll visit several shops to compare prices, colors, styles, etc before making a final decision whereas I prefer to be in and out within a few minutes of entering the store.

Why I don’t like indecisiveness

When I’m unable to make a decision it paralyses me. I put delay the decision for another time. This can lead to days or weeks of procrastination. Perhaps you’ve been in the same boat trying to decide between the different flavors of ice cream or what kind of car to buy.

Consequences of indecisiveness

Steals your joy
Indecisiveness steals your joy because it prevents you from taking action which generates immediate results. For example I often have a difficult time deciding what design is best for a client’s website. Even after creating several designs I can’t decide which ones I should display to my client.

Fear of failure
The fear of making the wrong decision often results in paralysis. For instance when their are many choices you have a difficult time to decide which causes you to make no decision.

Ineffective leadership
If you’re leading a group of people and can’t decide what’s best of the group you will be seen as an ineffective leader.

Lack of control
Reaching a decision means you want to exercise as much control as you feel possible over an unknown outcome. In reality you can’t control everything (ie weather) and just have to do the best you can.

Low self esteem
Constantly being reminded that you’re wrong or fearing that you’ll make the wrong decision leads to low self-esteem and a sense of helplessness. You lose confidence in yourself and try to avoid making tough decisions.

How to overcome indecisiveness

Live life
There’s a greater risk in a life not lived, or things left undone. For instance you may have a bucket list of things you still want to do your life but still have not made the decision or created a plan to do them.

Don’t worry about being wrong

Small decisions (ie deciding what flavor icecream to choose) shouldn’t be something to fret over if the consequence of being right or wrong doesn’t really matter.

Take responsibility for your decision
Even if you make the wrong decision, it’s better to decide than to languish in indecisiveness.

For example once I was leading a group of people through the forest and lost the trail. I couldn’t decide which way to go and feared getting us all lost. I decided on a course to go praying it was the right one. The grumbling and complaining from the people in my group continued until (fortunately) we got back on the right trail.

Overcome your fears
Fear leads to inaction. To overcome the fear of indecision weigh all your options then decide. It’s better to make a decision than suffer paralysis through analysis. Most daily decisions are not life and death so they can easily be changed.

Get comfortable with the possibility of being wrong

What’s the worst that could happen if you actually were wrong? What would you do if that catastrophe actually happened? Indecisiveness can be overcome when you feel like you’ve nothing to lose. Boldness can seem less fool-hardy when the potential for loss is reduced or eliminated.

Exercise your decision muscles
The more you get comfortable making decisions the better you’ll get at it. So instead of avoiding making decisions become a decision maker. It will boost your self esteem, build confidence in yourself and enable you to become an effective leader.

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