Friday, July 16, 2010

To be or not to be

To be or not to be
The power of decision making

Introduction: Decisions, decisions, decisions! Every moment of your life, you have to make decisions whether you like it or not. Even when you decide not take a decision, you are actually making a decision to be indecisive. It is because you have made a decision so you are reading this article and it is your decision that will keep you reading up to the end or you may decide to do otherwise. It is a simple truth of life that you are where you are because of the decisions you have made at certain point of time in your life. If that is the case then we out to know that there is tremendous potential hidden in our decisions to be revealed. We ought to know the art of decision making; we ought to learn the skills of making decisions that will influence our lives and the lives of others around us in a positive way. This article will make us aware of the skills of making decisions and how can we use them to our benefit.

Indecisiveness: The Hamlet’s syndrome of indecision making is a pervasive phenomenon. Just as Hamlet was plagued between the decisions about his scheming Uncle Claudius, who had committed a regicide by killing his father, marrying his mother and usurping his throne so, are many people plagued about their day to day decisions. Many times as common people, we fail to realize that the ability to take decisions is a gift from God and there is awesome power in decision making. “It’s in the moment of your decisions that your destiny is shaped”, says Anthony Robbins. That one quote made a tremendous impact in my own life. It was then I decided that I should commence into the field of Soft – Skills teaching for which I always had a passion. It is because that decision I took, that I have a good job and also I am writing this article. Remember whoever you are, every moment of your life you have to take decisions. It may be from a simple decision like which dress should you wear today or what you should have in your plate for dinner to decisions in the corporate world that move transactions, money and people. In fact God has bestowed this power of decision making to human beings exclusively. Animals or other creatures cannot distinguish between the good and bad and decide. So we are privileged creation of God that has been given the independent power of decision making. We should use it for our growth, peace, prosperity and well – being. But many times we are indecisive about things. We cannot decide between the choices laid before us. Somebody said that it is better to make wrong decisions than not making any at all. Wrong decisions will make the correct path more obvious so we should not shy away from wrong decisions. Yes, don’t be afraid of making decisions, for an indecisive person will meet the fate of Hamlet, that’s the lesson we get to learn from Shakespeare’s tragedy.

Decide to look at the positive side of life: When you get up in the morning, you have to decide between the two choices, whether you would look at the day with the eyes of hope and enthusiasm or you would complain and crib about how awful it is. Every situation that you encounter from thereon during the day would challenge you to take bold decisions or decisions that are influenced by outer circumstances. Remember this; your happiness is directly linked to the decision to look at the positive side even when the outer circumstances are pressurizing you to do otherwise. When your car tire is flat, you can decide to curse the car, the day and God or decide to remain unperturbed and choose to travel by a cab or in a friend’s car. When you face the heat at your workplace, you can decide to lash back and endanger your reputation in the work place or use the heat to warm up your chances of getting promoted by doing exactly and over of what is expected from you. When someone treats you wrong and overlooks you, you can choose to worry over the matter or decide to bypass the matter and show nothing but love to the one who wrongs you. “Do not be overcome by evil; but overcome evil by good.” That should be our motto in such cases. When you encounter a situation you don’t like, you should have an eye on long term benefit about the situation rather than looking at the near discomfit it is causing you. Maybe your boss hands over to you a job that you dislike, so you fret and fume about it. But by doing the work without complaining, you will make an positive impression on your boss and after many years when the time comes for a higher post to be filled, your boss will have none other than you in his mind.

Decide to be courageous: “When you cannot make up your mind which of the two evenly balanced courses of action you should take- choose the bolder” says, Ezra Pound. There is an awesome truth hidden in this quote. Many times we shy away from taking the courageous or bolder decisions when we are faced with a dilemma. What do you do when you encounter a situation where you get a project for which you have to be away from your family members for some period? You are torn between the two options; you don’t feel secure leaving your comfort zone of family members, your colleagues and friends and venture into the unknown. Let me tell you in the olden days, when much of the new lands were to be discovered people rarely went out into the deep sea. They used to travel in parallel to the shore, always keeping the shore in their sight. But there was one man Columbus, who decided to travel perpendicular and not parallel to the sea shore. He ventured out deep into the sea, faced times of doubt, fear and storms but at the end of it he discovered many new lands. When your marriage is on the verge of breaking up you are faced with the decision of divorce but you choose the bolder one, to win over your mate once again to woo him or her once again, to fall in love once again. You decide to stick with her or him and you through your actions that emanate nothing but love you finally win. You decided to be courageous, it is always too soon to quit. You took the courageous decision and you and your posterity is benefited by your action. Everyone in the exam hall resorts to malpractice, the examiners don’t seem to care much about it. You stick to the courageous decision of not resorting to the malpractice of cheating, you study and you pass. Maybe on paper the others got better grades than you, but when it comes for the time of implementing what they have learnt, they are blank walls, while you a collage full of knowledge and wisdom. In life you are more successful, deep down in your heart you are happier and the smile on your lips is not a fake one. Bravo! Stick to the bolder, courageous decisions in life, they will take you ahead miles while keeping on your face the smiles.

Decide to rise above, to be nobler: Lastly, whenever you encounter a situation that challenges you to be mean and to be like the people around you choose the better option. Don’t soar on the average level, be like the eagle, rise higher, don’t swim with the current, be a live fish swim against the current, don’t react like the ordinary mortals, be proactive choose your response and choose the nobler side. Whenever the situation around you or the people around you pressurize you to take an action that seems to be less than noble don’t give in. Always stick to the nobler decisions in life. It may seem that for sometime you are missing the fun but on a long term basis you would be glad to know that what you viewed as fun was nothing but frivolity and vanity that would have pushed you off the course. Let me illustrate, many students when they venture out into their college years, they are pressurized by some students to hang outside the classrooms rather than hear the lectures of the teachers. Many students give in to this temptation. They while away their time outside in the college canteen or go for a movie or indulge in habits like smoking and drinking. Such habits seem to be fun for the moment but on the long term basis they destroy the student’s career. They change a student’s focus from academic goals to goals that are nothing but vanity. By the time a student realizes his or her mistakes, it is too late. So friends, don’t give in to decisions that are less noble, decide to rise above, decide to pursue the nobler, the higher, the better. Decide to be a winner; decide to pursue the lifestyle of winners. Remember in doing so, you may seem to loose the fun but you will sustain the joy in your heart forever.

Conclusion: I would like to conclude this article by the famous lines from the well-known poem, ‘The Road not taken’ of Robert Frost: “Two roads diverged in a wood and I, took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.” May God bless you all readers and give you the courage to decide, to make decisions, to make mistakes, to learn and to grow. May we all be awaken to the awesome power of decision making.
Joy be all yours.

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