How to Make Better Decisions in Your Life

Really? You’re back? My last article didn’t scare you off? Wow, I’m impressed. Last time we talked about “What makes you tick” and you can’t start to answer that question unless you’re potentially ready to make some changes in your life, and people avoid change like Tiger Woods avoids the truth.

But change is GOOD. It makes you feel like you’re grabbing life by the you-know-what and it ensures your actions are in line with who you are at the core. That means you’ll be more fulfilled and you’ll perform much better in every single area of your life. So let’s get started.

Your Amazing Life Inc.
Imagine you are the President of a company. We’ll call the company “Your Amazing Life”. A big opportunity has come across your expensive antique desk and you’re trying to determine if it’s a good fit for your organization. That’s scary, so firstly you procrastinate as much as possible (just like in life). You reorganize the files on your desk, answer the easy emails, look through your calendar and send a couple text messages to friends. But surprisingly, the answer hasn’t miraculously appeared in your brain yet. You still have to figure it out.

You do this by comparing the opportunity with the Mission, Values and Strengths of “Your Amazing Life”. Does it match your Mission and Values? Does it allow you to use your top Strengths? If it doesn’t, then you don’t do it, no matter how sexy the opportunity may seem. If it fits, then you charge ahead full steam. Just like an organization, you need to determine your very own Mission, Values and Strengths. Otherwise how can you make proper decisions? This goes for your career, relationships, hobbies…everything.

Strong Like Bull (or not)
Last time I gave you a link to a great online test to determine your 24 Character Strengths in order. Now let’s talk about how to use those test results. First of all, accept that there are some things you are not good at. Most people you work for want you to improve the things you’re not good at, but that is a complete waste of time. If you focus on your weaknesses you will end up with mediocrity and nothing better (and that will annoy the heck out of you). However, if you continually focus on your strengths you will end up mind-blowing, earth-shattering success.

However, sometimes we simply have to use our weaknesses (especially at work), so how do we do it effectively? 1/ You must compensate with something you’re good at: look at your top 5 strengths – how can you use any of those in this tricky scenario? 2/ Determine who in your network is good in this particular area. Good managers hire people that compensate for his/her own weaknesses and those of the existing team. Do you do this too? Or do you hire people just like you?

Write out those top 5 strengths and keep them with you. Get familiar with them. How can you use those strengths more in your everyday life?

The Value of Values
The next thing to figure out for “Your Amazing Life” is your Values. Whenever you are angry or frustrated in life it is because one of your Values has been challenged.

1. Review this Values list and highlight all the values that resonate with you.
2. Narrow them down to your 10 most important Values.
3. Put them in order from 1 to 10 (1 being the most important for you).

In my next article I will tell you how to use your Values to continue making better decisions, be more fulfilled, and therefore perform like a champ.

My stomach values food, and I’m hungry, so I’m off to the kitchen now. Have a great week.

Billy Anderson

Images provided by Basketman and Ambro

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