Success happens one decision at a time.
Stop the cycle and overcome analysis paralysis. Choose and move forward.
Rob and I took six months – 182 days – to choose our first new couch. (“Chesterfield” if you’re in Canada.) We analyzed everything about each couch we saw. We went back to stores to look at the same couch many more than a few times, I’m embarrassed to say.
In the end, our choice was good. It wasn’t perfect, but it was good… enough. The downside? We missed out on having a new couch for more months than was necessary. We bought our second new couch, a loveseat, in an afternoon.
Most times the decisions you need to make aren’t the last nail in your coffin. If you find yourself going ’round and ’round (and ’round again) … STOP! You’ve got analysis paralysis.
Perfect isn’t necessary. (Except in brain surgery, I guess. <grin>)
Go for good and move on.
Make the decision!
If you’re finding it hard to move out of the cycle of analysis paralysis, here are 10 thoughts to spark some movement.
Overcome Analysis Paralysis
10 things to remind yourself for an antidote to analysis paralysis:
- Everyone makes mistakes. It’s not the mistake that impedes long-term progress, rather, it’s not moving past a mistake that’s the real killer of dreams. If you make a mistake, you can pick yourself up and keep on going. Read this on getting back up again.
- You know the outcome you want. If your decision sends you off-course, you’ll know. And you’ll be able to make a different decision to get yourself back on course.
- You can eliminate the bad options for a shorter list. Make a list. Cross off the options that probably won’t work – be brutal. With a shorter list, it’ll be easier to decide. Studies have shown that consumers make a decision much more quickly when given fewer options.
- Is what you believe… true? Are you trying to make a decision based on emotion or fact? Our emotions can lead us in circles. Include a trusted advisor in your process to help you identify the truth. (And to point out where your emotions are leading you astray.)
- You can add an accountability partner or process to make the decision easier. Read more here on 8 ways to hold yourself accountable.
- Opinions don’t need to impact your self-worth. You’ve read the Eleanor Roosevelt quote, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”, haven’t you? It’s true. I once responded to a criticism of a decision by saying, “Fortunately, my sense of self-worth isn’t dependent on your opinion.” (I’m not usually so candid – I shocked myself.) However, this statement improved our relationship so much that this person is now just a little bit friendly when we meet. Astonishing.
- Deadlines are your friend. Set a deadline to make your decision. Keep it.
- Fear is your enemy. -> False Evidence Appearing Real -> Fear lies to you. See #4.
- You can pray about this. So often we forget to pray about these decisions… Release your concerns to the God who created everything, and knows everything. He cares about even the tiny stuff. (Perhaps because it’s all tiny to Him?)
- All big things are done in small steps. If the decision seems too big, then chunk it down. Choose the right size decision for this point in time. Go with it.
I imagine this will not be the last decision you make in life. You’ll feel empowered when you finally decide.