During the last few months, I feel like I've used the word 'choice' more times than any other. We're all faced with choices. There's the small choice: soup or salad with dinner. And there are the larger choices: to change careers or not, to move or not, to divorce or seek additional help. I work with clients of all ages. As parents, we can help ensure our children have the tools needed to navigate the world of choices later in life. This comes in providing and following through on both positive and negative consequences for the choices they make. As adults, when our choices become harder, we can always seek additional support. With the larger choices in life, some may say there's no wrong choice, but it doesn't feel that way when we're faced with it.
Here's one method that can work. Rather than a standard pros and cons list, ask yourself what you would like to have happen and what you are trying to avoid. For example, if you are facing the choice of changing careers or continuing on the path you're on, consider the above questions. When considering these questions, you're more likely to feel satisfied regardless of the decision you make. Perhaps, you'd like to avoid feeling stuck or staying stagnant. Maybe you'd like to feel like you matter or that you make a difference more than you already do. Once you've built this list, ask yourself how each of the choices presented allows for your wishes to come true. Take some time and meditate on it. Find a time and a place in your house that allows you to quiet your mind. Relax your body and imagine yourself in each of the situations you are deciding against. Spend some time meditating on this and record your thoughts. How did you feel in each of the situations? Were you happier in one? Did you feel uneasy in one or both of them? Then it's up to you and your support network to decide if any uneasiness you feel is due to fear or if it's due to the choice not being right at this time. Again, allowing yourself the time to consider the choices will give a sense of closure and satisfaction.
We all know it's not as simple as asking a few questions and taking time to meditate, but these ideas can help. Rely on your support network and consider working with a coach to help guide you on the path life is taking you down. Life's decisions are not easy, but there are many paths to the answer. Trust in yourself. You've gotten this far, know that you have the tools necessary to make the best answer for yourself!
Karen Becker is an author, speaker and personal growth coach. She has a Master's Degree in Counseling and applies these skills when coaching clients. She has years of experience coaching clients in all areas of life: parenting, co-parenting after divorce and in personal growth/wellness. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.