Self enrichment Self Management

Decision making is vital

Recently in the last minute I decided to Interview my friend Dr. Shahnaz, who is a stage four cancer survivor and an amazing humorous poet.

How good are you at decision making? Most of us aren’t that good, and the confusion continues. It is said that ‘even a bad or wrong decision is better than making no decision.’ If it is a good decision, great. A wrong decision can be back-tracked later on, or changed later, but no decision means that you will remain in one spot till you have decided. That is the worst. It means that the status quo will just continue and life won’t move on.

I’ve seen a rotten judge stare at the ceiling saying, ‘what can I do about it?’ (For God’s sake, make a decision!) – Specially when the right one is staring at you in the face! It took me four and a half years to realize that this so called ‘judge’ isn’t going to come up with anything, so I made the decision. It was better to face facts as they were and move on. It meant I had to give up a lot. But my objective was clear, and that was peace of mind and the need to move on in my life, to improve my quality of life and move on.

 So, you must realize that making no decision is BAD..

Decision making is essential

Otherwise, it only becomes a hurdle which is stopping everything from happening. I know, the biggest fear is ‘what if I am wrong?’ This is more so, when deciding on a job, life partner, move to another city or country or choosing a method of treatment for your illness. You feel as if you just cannot afford to make a mistake.

Well, what you really can’t afford is to not make a decision at all. After a decision is made you move on to the next level.  

My son-in-law Ahmad Bilal says, ‘it is not important what decision you make, more important is what you do with the decision you make!’

How to make the right decision?

There are ways to make the best decision, let me share some with you.

Simple pros and cons exercise:

Putting a vertical line in middle of a page, then writing all points in favor on left side, and the setbacks or cons on right side. The number of points on each side is itself a clue. Yet the weightage of some points are enough to tip the scales in their favor! So, number or points versus value of each point is a point to seriously consider.

Edward de Bono, six hats method:

This is also a very effective method and there is much online regarding the six hats suggested by Edward de Bono here.

Toss for it:

Hehehe, yes that way to decide who bats first in a cricket match. Same way, you can use it on simple decisions.

Listen to your gut feeling:

Go for the decision which is in harmony with your head and heart and you get the right ‘feeling’ for it.

Istakhara prayer:

Read with translation….

There is this prayer of Istakhara according to which you pray to Allah for guidance to decide rightly . In this prayer you ask Him to guide you to a decision which will be good for you from a spiritual and worldly point of view (deen O duniya.) After the prayer is done, you wait for a sign, or a feeling which tells you which direction to go in. Simple!!!

Decision making skills enhance your life:

Here are some decisions that I’ve made in life, which have brought me to where I am in life now:

The decision to stay connected with my college and school friends, (only a selected few). Because the other decision is to realize, you can’t be a good friend to everyone. You’ve got to pick and choose.

Met some of my college friends recently.

The other day, I decided to stop by at Fatima Jinnah park for a while because I knew it will make me feel at peace.

Fatima Jinnah Park in F-9 is amazing, but not very safe for women, so be careful about timings.

Painting has always given me a lot of solace. Any passion of yours can do that. Provided you make a time and place for it. Then the decision to do paintings that hold meaning in my life, and hopefully in the life of the buyer of my paintings, or those who view it. As my father always said, ‘you cannot afford to do ‘art for art’s sake’, in a country like ours where there is so much poverty. So, I choose to interpret verses of Iqbal in many of my paintings.

A verse from Allama Iqbal’s Tulip of Sinai.

The decision to help the poor was made a long time ago; with each year my actions brought me closer to that goal. Today, it is almost the third consecutive year of feeding the poor, and recently helped with the 191st wedding in an underprivileged family’s home.

Stay in Practice:

Make a habit of making quick decisions which will turn out right for you. It makes your life much easier, and more streamlined this way. Keep making quick decisions in normal every day situations, and you’ll be able to make long term decisions easily too. Your philosophy of life must be clear and have your decisions well aligned with them.

Know your North:

All decisions get easy when you are sure about your North or the direction towards which you want to take your life.

Leave it to Allah:

No matter what you do, be ready to make every effort to make your decision successful. Know that even if you do make a mistake, God is with you and you can make a U-turn anytime. He will help you get where you were destined to be. But the initiative and effort has to come from you.

Do all the necessary research needed for that decision, while reading the prayer regularly too. The number of times needed to read it is different for different folks.

If your decision is the one which takes you closer to your Lord, God, Allah, Ram or Whatever you may call Him, then it will certainly be the best one. He never wants us to do anything against Nature or our own selves.

So, that is all I wanted to share with you today.

Stay blessed with making great decisions to pave your path to success in your life.

So this is all folks!

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