“The purpose of education is to create in a person the ability to look at the world for himself, to make his own decisions.”
—James Baldwin, 20th Century American author
Image from Unsplash by Kyle Glenn
It’s pretty common at this point in the year for people to continue wishing each other a happy new year. I feel comfortable doing so even into early February.
As the days after the winter solstice become slightly longer and we pine for an early spring, many of us hope that 2023 will be a better and brighter year.
What were some of the most significant decisions you made in 2022?
How did they influence where you are today and the trajectory of the months ahead?
Perhaps it may be time to head back to school and expand your educational opportunities.
Instead of—or in additional to—formal schooling, please be sure to enroll in the “university of you.”
Consider creating your own personal and professional curriculum.
What would you like to learn? Who will be your teachers?
How might the lessons learned help you look more closely at the world and make even better decisions moving forward?
Decide to decide and then take the leap. You will land on your feet more than you think.
—Calm App Reflection
Image from Unsplash by Jeremy Bishop
Making good decisions takes practice. Consider letting your heart, gut, and then your head be your guide. Seeking congruency among these three and acting with courage will increase your batting average and confidence with future decisions.
Where are you currently struggling to make an important decision? How can you let your head, heart, and gut guide your path forward?
Requesting the support of a close friend, family member, or coach can offer alternative perspectives you may wish to consider.
“Give every day the chance to become the most beautiful day of your life.”
—Mark Twain, pen name of Samuel Clemens
Image from Unsplash by Fikri Rasyid
Consider your life as a roll of bathroom tissue.
When you are born you have 1,000 sheets to use. As the days, weeks, months and years pass, you begin to notice the roll is spinning faster. Perhaps you are now closer to the end of the roll than the beginning.
Consider the idea that rather than fretting that some or even many of those sheets have been wasted or lost, you still have the opportunity to make each moment of every day something to joyfully enjoy and celebrate.
How can and will you be far more intentional about making the most of each precious and beautiful day ahead?
“You should not decide until you have heard what both sides have to say.”
—Aristophanes, 4th Century BC Greek Playwright
Image from Unsplash by Ehimetalor Unuabono
Do you ever say — aloud or perhaps even more often to yourself — “My mind is made up” or “I know!”? How often do you get the impression that others in your personal or professional communities express similar thoughts?
If these scenarios sound familiar, you are probably dealing with what I call “Shortcut Listening.” This happens when an individual or group gathers just enough information to fill in the rest of the word puzzles based on their own opinions, experiences, and biases.
Where and with whom would taking the long road of listening help you and others make far better decisions at work and at home?
“The majority of meetings should be discussions that lead to decisions.”
—Patrick Lencioni, Founder of The Table Group
Image from Unsplash by Content Creators
Death by Meeting is one of Patrick Lencioni’s numerous books. He first made his mark with his classic, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, from which his business fable format gained considerable popularity.
How do you feel about the meetings you attend? How many, how long, and perhaps most importantly, how productive are these often stolen parts of your day?
Given the concept that people participate more fully in that which they help create, try using the More, Less, Start, Stop Exercise to upgrade the engagement and value of your meetings.
Please also check out Death by Meetings for additional ideas that can benefit you and your organization.
FRIDAY REVIEW: DECISIONS
What is your decision-making process? Here are a few decision-related posts you may have missed. Click each link to read the full message.
“When at a conflict between mind and heart, always follow your heart.”
“Is the juice worth squeezing?”
“Create each day anew.”
The Latin root of the word “decision” literally means “to cut.”
Where are you currently wrestling with a life decision? How long has this issue been on your mind, and perhaps a cause of sleepless nights?
For most of us, making the right or best decision is of significant importance and can have considerable payoffs or consequences.
What if you used today’s quote as a way of assisting you by simply limiting or cutting off some, most, or the majority of the options you may be considering?
Consider looking up the book or the term The Paradox of Choice. See how this concept can assist you in making even better decisions in the future.
“Play the tiles you get.”
Image from Flickr by Joe King
In her book, 365 Days of Wonder, R.J. Palacio shares a charming story of her grandparents. Both avid Scrabble players, they played every day for more than 50 years.
Her grandfather, known as being the “intellectual,” almost always lost to his wife, who was primarily a homemaker, not the lawyer who graduated from Columbia.
Grandma Nelly was quite smart in her own right. She loved crossword puzzles. She had a miraculous ability to make the most of the tiles she was given rather than waiting to use the highest value tiles on double or triple word spaces. That was grandpa’s strategy.
In what areas of life are you waiting to get better tiles? What would be the value and benefit of learning to play the ones you currently have, and those you receive each day?