Wow, I so rarely post on my personal blog. It's still shocks me how many hundreds of people wander over here to my little spot on the interwebs. Thank you - whomever you are. If you're a random web-bot, then ignore this. Beep beep, bloop bloop. For you REAL people - thanks for coming by. I'll try to kick the dust off the doorstop next time.
So, I wanted to write about Making Hard Decisions today.
What do you do when things get hard? What about when you lose motivation? What if you don't "feel" valued? How do you handle conflict? How do you handle making choices - when multiple options "seem" like the right choice (or at least a good/adequate choice)?
I don't have any silver bullets for you - but - I'm going to share with you how I've processed this recently. Maybe this helps someone. Maybe it's just cathartic for me to get it out of my head for now :)
About a week or so ago, I had a thing enter my life where I had to make a decision. It was a very hard decision. The details are not important - the process is the important part.
Some decisions to be made are very personal. They are between you - and God - and you just need to work toward making the right choice.
Other decisions; however, affect multiple people. They may affect your family. They may affect your employer. They may affect your community. Those decisions require some extra care - and diligence - to reach an answer.
Happiness and Success generally follows me. Whether I'm at a job, with friends, in the community, in education, or whatever - I am a generally happy and successful person. That's amazing. God has done some cool stuff with me. I have certainly not arrived - by any means ;) I had to make a decision on what was going to bring me the MOST happiness, and the MOST success (however I define success), and meet the MOST of my fuzzy "needs" I have to be a good man, husband, father and friend.
Here are the four main words that I used to process:
- Release - I am a man of faith. My faith has highs and lows like everyone else of course, but, ultimately I want to seek the will of God. And I wrestled with whether I was "released" from one option vs. "distracted" by another option. Sure I have personal goals and desires and such, but I want to make good choices. I have made plenty of bad choices in the past and this concept of "release" is a big deal to me.
- Regret - I don't necessarily have FOMO (fear of missing out). I have regrets in my life, but, they aren't the regrets you may be thinking of. Those of you that know me the best (long time friends and family) know that I've had legal issues and substance issues. I don't necessarily (bear with me) regret those. I'm sad for them. They caused broken relationships. But they were a step to the man I am today. I don't regret them. What I regret is being timid when I should have been bold. I regret hedging on risk when I should have had more faith. I regret making impulsive decision rather that trusting in the "waiting moment" before me. So, I really process a lot through "regret" as I make decisions.
- Fear - I don't get scared of much. Well spiders. Spiders scare me. But I have a few fears for sure. I fear not being the husband that my wife needs. I fear not being a good dad for my kidlets. I fear wasting time. I'm 40, and I want to maximize my life. So, I fear that I'll reach 50 or 60 before I know it and haven't done all that I know I can do - and should do.
- Trust - I had to figure out who / what I was trusting. God? Sure. Of course. But I had to trust other people too in this decision. I have/had to trust things will be different and better. I have/had to trust that I had the right place in the decision. I have/had to trust myself and who I am (at the core) and just not who I think I am.
At the end of the day, I made the right decision. Why do I know it's the right decision? Because I made it. And it's the right decision - Duh (haha). I sought clarity. I sought answers. I asked hard questions - of myself and others. I slept poorly many nights, but once I worked through it, and woke up that last day, I was at peace.
And you know what? Now that I've made this hard decision - I am ready. I am anticipatory. I am expecting great things.
Again, this may not be the most helpful post for anyone besides myself; however, I think the process of understanding Release, Regret, Fear and Trust is a reasonable one. I may have to (tm) that :)