• Holly McClain

How to make a decision when you just can’t decide.

Some decisions are tough to make. To me, a tough decision is one where you just can’t decide. There is a way to make a sound decision and feel confident about it. The process I use (and it works like a charm!) comes from Karl McLaren’s book: The Language of Emotions. It’s a foundational resource in my practice. My clients and I use it to navigate, interpret and feel our emotions.


The key to a balanced, drama free decision making process is weighing the decision with our intellect (brain) and our emotions (feelings). Think about it and feel it. Most of the time we are only using our brains to think about the decision. We need to also include our emotions and feel the decision too.


Step 1 - feel the decision. Allow yourself to feel what it would be like if you choose option A. Ask yourself detailed questions about what that decision would look like then follow up with how that would feel. Do the same for option B.


For example, when I was deciding whether to move up to Northern California or stay put in the Bay Area where I grew up I let my imagination run wild. For each location I imagined the housing situation, the people, work life, weather and available activities. Next, I felt what it would feel like living in each area. I allowed myself to feel life in the Bay Area and then feel life up north. This allowed my emotions to weigh in on the decision first. This process allowed me to dream and create a vision for the future for each decision (each location in this case) and feel what the future could hold for each as well.


Step 2 - ‘put on your thinking cap’ and weigh your options with your intellectual mind. Think about it. For me, that meant analyzing cost of living, earning potential, commute time, home prices and proximity to activities for each location.


Our society values logical/brain thoughts over feelings, especially when making decisions. However, adding your feelings into the decision making process will give you a more balanced and thorough way to weigh your decisions - allowing you to see the potential in the future of each choice as well.


Give this a try! Dream and feel your choices. Then, invite your logical mind to step in and balance it all out. Happy decision making!

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