Do you ever feel like you’re pressured into making decisions before you’re truly ready? It’s always a good idea to weigh your alternatives and make your decision in a calm fashion. Sometimes, though, you may not have a lot of time on your hands, and in these situations you can speed up your decision making skills instead of throwing yourself into a panic.
Try these techniques to help you make good, quick decisions:
1. Calm down. If you’re feeling pressured into making a fast decision, the first thing to do is calm down. If you aren’t in a position where you can think clearly, then it will be more difficult to make a good decision.
• Take a few deep breaths to aid in clarity of thought and help you become less stressed.
2. Avoid running in circles. When time is of the essence, you might find that your mind begins to run in circles. Break you decision down into the vital parts and focus on the benefits of each alternative one at a time.
3. Take the time you need. Most of the time you won’t need to make decisions in a matter of seconds. You may need to make a decision quickly, but allow yourself time to go over your options.
4. Make a list of options and alternatives. You can write the steps down, or keep a list in your head. Do what works for you. Consider the outcomes of the available choices, as well as alternative ideas.
5. Consider your feelings and the feelings of others. Sometimes it’s good to just follow a gut feeling even if you don’t have much to back it up. Explore your initial feelings about the decision. Also, take the time to consider the feelings of the other people involved.
6. Ask for help. Most of the time you don’t have to be alone with your major decisions, and if you need to make a decision quickly, it’ll help to get another pair of eyes on the situation. Ask for help from someone you know and trust.
7. Narrow down your choices. See if you can quickly cross some alternatives off of your list of possibilities. Your decision will be easier if there are fewer choices.
8. Think on your feet. Strengthen your ability to think fast. This takes practice, confidence, and a firm belief in yourself. As you become more accustomed to thinking on your feet, you’ll automatically stop second-guessing yourself in tough situations.
9. Make your decision. If you’ve arrived at a conclusion but you’re still hesitating, then you haven’t made your decision yet. Have confidence and go with whichever alternative seems best based on the information you have.
• Remember, many day-to-day decisions aren’t permanent. If your information changes drastically, or things don’t go as planned with this decision, you may be able to change your decision to a new one based on the new circumstances.
As long as you practice these tips, you’ll improve your decision making skills. It may take some work, but the ability to make quick and wise decisions is just around the corner.