It’s time to decide and make a plan. Last week, we talked about what is in your control. Control is about the decisions you make, how often you decide, and the impact of the decisions you make. These things matter much more than how many decisions you make.
Today, we will talk about different aspects of decision making. Deciding seems so final. It’s really not. I will teach you about making deliberate decisions today, and then reassessing them when the information you have changes.
Almost a decade ago, I decided what to have for breakfast, and I haven’t needed to decide again. I just grab the same breakfast and coffee and I’m ready to go. Who thinks this much about breakfast? We all do! We just don’t realize how much effort we put into decision making if we aren’t actively paying attention to our decisions. When choosing my breakfast, I thought about calories, energy level, hunger, and how different food choices affect my energy level. I weighed all these factors and made a decision about what I will eat every single day.
I have shared about ways that other leaders make decisions once to avoid decision fatigue in podcast 271. Anyone can learn to make decisions about the little things like simple meals, clothing uniforms, or putting items into a Sunday Basket®. Deciding once spends more energy up front, but it reduces decision fatigue and exhaustion over things that do not really matter in the long run.
Another important factor in making good decisions is controlling how many decisions you need to make in a given day. In the past, I used to think it was a sign of success that I made all of the decisions in the company; everyone answered to me! Now almost all of the decisions at home and work are happening without me - this is growth and success that can scale and be sustained! Organize 365® uses a decision making ladder similar to Michael Hyatt’s Delegation Levels and the Phoenix Project Levels of Decision Making.
We all have a finite capacity for making decisions. It’s a physical reality. You can only make so many decisions. If you want to make more impact, you must empower and teach people how to make decisions the way you would make them. This means they can make decisions without you. Freeing up your own capacity and investing in your team furthers your mission and vision so much more than you can do alone.
One important lesson I’ve learned about decision making is that you can only make decisions about your own home, work, and life. Decisions become easier once you truly embrace that you only control yourself. Other people will make their own decisions. I can see the beauty in all of the decisions that people make. The decisions that others make don’t bother me. I love to learn how other people come to the conclusions and decisions that they make. You can’t make a decision to control another person. You can only decide how you want to work, live, or do life.
Very few decisions we make are permanent or irreversible. At certain times in life, and certain seasons of our lives, we will need to re-make our decisions. Whenever you get more information, you should reflect and reconsider your decision. Ask yourself: Does it still work in this season of life? What has changed and how should my decision adapt?
I now look at what decisions may need to change at the start of each of my mini new years (January, May, and September). I make my decisions at the beginning of each 4 month stretch, and then I see how it goes. I don’t mind taking 120 days to research and try new decisions, and the final decision tends to last five to ten years. I work on one or two big decisions each trimester; this system doesn’t work with 30 new decisions.
September is the most productive planning time of the year. Every year, I set aside a Planning Day for my home and set goals for myself, home, family, and finances for the next 120 days. I also set aside a day every quarter for myself and my team to do a Workbox Planning Day. I’d love to have you join me and make progress on your own decision making and goals!