Choices, choices, choices...
Posted on 28th November 2018 at 08:00
Life is all about choices.
And, yes, we know this is something of a cliché (!) but that doesn’t mean it isn’t true...
Some are made consciously.
When we stop and look at all the options before deciding which one to choose. Weigh up the pro’s and con’s of each one. Make an informed – or conscious – decision.
Others are made by default.
Perhaps by turning a blind eye to whatever it is until the decision is made for us. Whether by someone else or events making the choice for us.
Then there are those things we simply can’t – or won’t – make a decision about. Although why, we’re often at a loss to explain to ourselves, let alone others. So we just dither until it’s too late and, again the decision is made for us.
If you think these last two don’t apply to you, think again. We’ve all done it at times…
Sometimes, we don’t even realise there are choices to be made until it’s too late.
And, as an aside, when someone says there wasn’t any choices they were wrong. There is ALWAYS a choice even though, sometimes, they may be hard to see.
Or there may be several options, none of which we like. In other words, it’s about choosing the least worst option.
But there is still a choice.
Then after the choice comes the consequences.
Regardless of how the choice was made, there are always consequences and it’s then up to us to deal with them. And this can be a bitter pill it can be to swallow at times...
All too often, we make choices by default. Then, when the consequences are not to our liking, we try to blame someone – or something – else. Our family / friends / Employer / Government / Banks (!) / fill in the blank. However, the bitter truth is that the buck always stops with us, whether we like it or not. And, more importantly, regardless of how the choice was made.
Sadly, all too many people live their lives by default. Allowing other people – and circumstances – to determine what happens to them. They’re like a rudderless ship, at the mercy of the tides and winds, not knowing where – or when – they’re going to end up. Whether marooned in the shallows, deluged by the rapids or becalmed in deep water. Really, they’re adults who are more like children inside.
The ability to choose is a great gift. It gives us the power to fashion our lives any way we like. We can go in any direction we like, rather than simply allowing the current to take us where it will.
Having talked to many clients about the “two c’s” – choices and consequences – over the years, we can almost guarantee their response – and are sure that some of you will be thinking the same.
What if the “wrong” choice is made? Whatever “wrong” means. It’s like being back at school and worried about failing an exam.
While it may sound a bit simplistic, there is no “right” or “wrong” choice. Life isn’t that simple – or black and white. The ONLY important thing is that a choice is made, whether it’s the best one available or least worst option (!).
Why is this?
Quite simply because it keeps us moving ahead rather than in limbo. Even more important, we gain some useful experience in the process.
Whatever the choice – and whether you’d have done it differently with the power of hindsight (!) – it will ALWAYS help you. To start with, it’s always a relief to have made a choice. Whatever the outcome, you will always have benefitted from it. At the very least, it’s an opportunity to hone our decision making skills. Like all skills, it improves with practice – even if it’s that we’re never going to make that choice again (!) – or, if we do, we’ll do it differently next time.
Now compare this with the default option, where we gain nothing. Not only do we lose control of our lives but also the opportunity of learning something new in the process.
And, one final thought before we close for today. Once a choice has made, life has a funny way of coming to our aid. It’s amazing how often making a choice opens up lots of other unexpected opportunities – and consequences –which usually turn out to take us in exactly the direction we wanted to go. Or, an even better one.
As always, the choice is yours (!).
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