One Key to Decision Making: Ask Yourself Some Questions
I’m a planner. Some might say if I had one of those popular “Little Miss” memes, mine would be Little Miss Control Freak. I like everything in its place, everything planned, and everything to go as planned. It drives my family a little crazy, but I also know it gives them comfort to know I’ve got it all under control. And sometimes that fuels my pride (just being honest here).
This approach to life and business often serves me well, but sometimes it means I don’t leave room for God to move in His way (#hisplannotmine) and I get frustrated when things don’t happen on my timeline. It also means I can get stuck in a swirl of ideas, easily overwhelmed in perfectionism, and paralyzed in my decision making.
Because the world is so loud, with shiny objects and squirrels vying for our attention, we can all find ourselves in a fog of prioritizing opportunities, ideas, and the right next step in our businesses at one time or another (or many). As the pressure mounts, we feel like pausing isn’t even an option: we must make the decision – any decision – and get moving before we lose momentum. Anyone else feel anxious reading that?
But what if, instead of lingering in the fog or jumping to a decision, we trusted God as our CEO the truth of how God made us to think and work, and let Him lead us to the best yes?
It starts with trusting who He is:
For God is the God of harmony, not confusion, as is the pattern in all the churches of God’s holy believers. 1 Corinthians 14:33, TPT
And trusting what He’s given us:
For God did not give us a spirit of timidity or cowardice or fear, but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of sound judgment and personal discipline [abilities that result in a calm, well-balanced mind and self-control]. 2 Timothy 1:7, AMP
Then using the tools He’s given us:
We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity. 2 Corinthians 10:5, MSG
Shaped by Christ, our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and for building lives of obedience into maturity. I love how the Message version above says we “fit every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of a life shaped by Christ.” So how do we actually do this?
One tool I use with my coaching clients to help them focus and carefully consider their decision making is the Decision Tree. Here’s how it works:
Create a list of key questions to ask yourself about the decision you’re making and how it fits your priorities and God’s direction. Here are some questions I use:
- Does this keep me in God’s will?
- Will this further the message God gave me?
- Will this bring values to others?
- Am I pushing?
- Am I getting in the way or in the weeds?
- Am I the right person for this task or should it be delegated?
- If this is the only thing I accomplish today, will I be satisfied?
- Am I being productive or just active?
- What is one thing I can do, that by doing it makes everything else easier or unnecessary? (excerpt from The One Thing by Gary Keller)
You can see these questions have the power to stop you in your tracks, pause and truly consider the outcome of the decision you’re making so you can ensure you stay true to God’s assignment. I invite you to download the tool at https://erinharrigan.com/decisiontree and give it a try yourself.
I invite you to think about what questions would make your list, and share them with me via DM!