I’ve never seen any successful person who didn’t make personal choices. But many people struggle with making choices and some don’t even make choices at all. If you want to have a good life, you have to start making decisions. Here are four key decisions you must make in life if you want to succeed.
But before we actually get to the decision-making part, let’s deal, first, with the problem of indecision.
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Indecision Has Destroyed Many Destinies
Indecision is a much bigger problem than it looks. Many people struggle with their lives. On the surface, it looks as though they are struggling with relationships, money, but what they are really struggling with is an inability to make decisions and be responsible for the outcome.
This is one of the biggest problems most youths face today – indecision. A lot of us think we can’t make choices about our lives because we are youths. “We will start making choices when we are 20” or “when we are done with school” or “when we get our apartment.” Not so, pal. This is a good way to fail in life.
Do you know that your success in life will depend largely on how good your youthful life was? So if you have always left everything to chance, life, parents, spouses, bosses, etc., it’s time to change and start making decisions for yourself.
Know that if that course, marriage, or job goes wrong, you will be the one to live with the consequences for the rest of your life. You and you alone, not the ones who decided for you.
They may get grazed but you are the one who eats the bullet. Dirt may splash on them but you are the one who plunges fully into the mess. Are you going to sit on the sidelines and look the other way as major decisions about your life are taken on your behalf? I didn’t think so.
So many advanced adults look back and think “had I known.” They now regret the life of indecision they wallowed in as youths. It’s time to address that. It’s time to get rid of the anything-goes mentality. What do they say now? “Watefa.” Girls love it. While the arms and pupil go 360 degrees alongside.
One thing you need to know is that in the end, you will be the one to live with the decisions that are made on your behalf. So you have every right to decide.
It’s not humility as some may think. Indecision is not submission. When I say indecision, I mean indecision.
When you say “whatever” or “it doesn’t matter,” it’s most times the same as not making a decision at all. I understand that when you are handed so many no’s you are inclined to resign over time.
But if you remain in that state – no matter the reason – you will end up a failure. You have to take up your decision-making ability.
If you want to succeed in life, you have to be decisive. It’s your life. So start making decisions you know you’ll be able to live with for the rest of your life.
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Why most people have a hard time making decisions
We all have several excuses for being indecisive. Sometimes it’s fear, other times we are just hopeless. What’s your reason? I’d like to know, seriously.
Many feel powerless to make a decision. If you are under someone, especially the difficult ones, you resign from making any decisions. If you came to meet a certain culture, even when you know it’s useless, you follow suit.
How about males who have resigned from being in control of their libido. Oh, we all resigned because we heard it’s not possible and as such we render ourselves slaves to things we are supposed to control. By the way, that’s part of the influence of knowledge. Make time and read that if you haven’t.
We all have excuses.
But when you look into it, you’ll find the prevailing cause of indecision is the lack of knowledge.
The lesser you know, the harder it will be to make decisions. And if you don’t deal with it, it goes from being a knowledge problem to a habit. Such that even when you know, you just won’t want to make a decision. Don’t let it become a habit. If it has, it’s time to change.
I don’t need a survey to prove this. It’s obvious that most people who struggle in life struggle with making decisions: either they are not making decisions or are making wrong choices. Whatever the case, what you know plays a vital role.
It’s simple at times. If you know what occasion you are attending and the kind of outfits needed, you won’t have such a hard time deciding on what to wear. Why? Because you know two important things about the situation.
On the other hand, if you have no idea what kind of occasion you are dressing up for, you will find it hard to decide on what to wear. Why? Because you don’t know what occasion you are attending.
This illustration paints a picture of how the lack of knowledge has caused many people to be indecisive or make wrong decisions at critical moments of their lives.
I think if some of us knew how big we were meant to be in life; if we knew that at some point we would be so filthy rich; if we knew that we would grow up to oversee hundreds or thousands of people in a business or organization; if we knew we would grow up to be busy moms and dads; most of us would be making slightly different choices from what we are choosing now. A little glance at the future could just be what you need to make the right choice.
Also, maybe we know we are going somewhere beautiful, big, satisfying, but we still don’t know what we need to be successful where life is taking us. Not knowing what we need for life, relationships, careers, our future, in general, is the reason most people make the wrong choices and others remain indecisive.
There is no way to know everything about the future. But we always know little about the future; so we make preparations based on the little we know while life unfolds the bigger picture.
Even when you may not know the future, you have an idea of what your future should be like. Get the required knowledge you need starting from today so you can make the choices that will help you achieve what you want.
(Written by Ekemini Robert. First published on Clurse.com Continue reading below)
Making a Choice isn’t as difficult as it seems
Why is it so easy for you to choose a dress? Why is it so easy to choose a smartphone? It’s because you know two things: 1) What you need and 2) what you need to meet that need.
And when you are not sure, you ask someone you can trust.
The same goes for every other choice you have to make in life. If you want to be successful in any way, you have to start making choices. Ask yourself what do I need? What do I need to meet my needs? And the answer to these questions will be the knowledge you need to make the right choice.
And when you are not sure what to do, ask. Start by asking God through prayers. You can also ask someone more knowledgeable on the subject. It could be a mentor, teacher, or friend.
Stop feeling powerless. Don’t leave life to chance. You have a choice. And you can make it stand.
You don’t have to wait for knowledge. The book of Proverbs says wisdom is everywhere. Read books. Pray. Spend time with the right person or group. And over time you will find yourself filled with wisdom and knowledge.
You have to start being responsible for the things that go on in your life. This is a quality you must cultivate if you are to start making decisions. When you know you are responsible, you will want to be the one who decides what happens and how to go about things.
If you are short of knowledge, please go back up and read “Why most people have a hard time making decisions.”
Take responsibility. I know a lot of people who will do just anything without thinking. They do so and then when things go wrong, they quickly put the blame on someone. “I did the wrong course because of my parents.” “I married the wrong person because I was pushed.”
And some people still do that. They allow people with selfish interests to make major life decisions for them.
Don’t do this. Let me ask you: Who gets to live with the consequences of those decisions when they go wrong or when they do not turn out as good as you thought? You and you alone.
What do you want? A life that you dreamed of or a life filled with regret and blame. You want the good life, of course. So be the one responsible for your decisions today. Choose what you want and go for them. As far as your life is concerned you’ll be the one to play the role and you should have a say on how the script is written.
What if I don’t have the resources?
If you don’t have to resources you still have a decision to make. You have to decide to have the resources. If you don’t make that decision the resources won’t come. Know this: You don’t wait to have the resources before you make a decision, you must decide to have or get the resources.
You don’t wait to decide when you have the money, you must decide to have the money.
You don’t hold off decision making until you have the power, you must decide to have or get the power.
What if I don’t have the Power
This is quite important because a lot of people make mistakes when seeking power. This will be a major problem if you are a youth or under someone.
What happens when your parents don’t agree; when your boss or husband doesn’t agree?
This problem is better solved before it even happens: before the marriage; before you sign the contract; before you take the job; before you make a promise. This is why you have to make good decisions on who you decide to be in a relationship with. However, if you are way past that and you have a decision to make, it can get uncomfortable.
Here is what I’ve learned. If you are a youth or under someone, there may be times when major decisions about your life are wrongly opposed or agreed on by other people you can’t control.
This should not stop you from being decisive. One of the weapons I use is prayer. Remember that passage? The heart of a king is in the hands of the Lord and he stirs it as he wills. (Proverbs 21:1)
What have you decided for your education, future, relationship, job? Make a decision.
After making the decision, go to God in prayer.
Then meet your parents or whoever it is opposing you. If you have already met them, go back to God.
Remember Pharaoh opposed the Israelites. He stopped them from implementing a decision that would give them a good future in a land flowing with milk and honey.
Go to God in prayer. If what you have chosen is God’s will, God can change your parent’s hearts. God can remove people from offices to give you the future you desire. Sometimes God can delay the outcome of things to give you the best results.
Mind how you part ways with people even when you know you are making the right decision. Do the best you can to part ways peacefully so it doesn’t come back to haunt you.
- Make a decision.
- Pray to God about it.
- Do what’s right and necessary to implement your goals.
- Let God handle the rest.
Now that we’ve cleared the air, here are 4 key areas you have to make decisions in life if you must succeed.
4 key areas you have to make decisions in life
We’ll have a glance at four important areas of life where you have to consciously make good decisions. This is not like a complete guide to how you can make it in life but this will shine a light on some of the areas you need to pay attention to if you want to do well in life.
Every kind of relationship you can think of comes into play here. You have to be able to decide on who has access into your life and what level of access you can allow for each individual or group of persons.
You have to choose the people in your life.
Apart from those you happen to be stuck with, like your family, you need to decide who stays in your life.
What kind of people are they? What principles govern their lives? What do they stand for? How do they treat others who don’t happen to be friends or family?
Answers to questions like this will determine if a person should stay in your life or not.
Where are you going? Does this person make your journey much easier or harder? I’ve seen talented sportsmen who have ruined their careers by hanging out with top musicians. They allowed those connections to influence them so much that they went from excellent to ordinary.
And even if you must hang out with someone for some reason, remember not everyone should be allowed too much access to you. Else, they will ruin you.
You have to be selective about everything: from school friends to mentors to a life partner.
Because these people don’t just take from you, they also add to you. They’ll influence you. The way they talk; the choices they make; what matters to them; their view on life, politics, relationships; even the way they think. You will slowly become them little by little without noticing.
So if you want to be the best, you have to learn to choose the best and hang out with them.
This doesn’t mean segregating yourself from people and being in a class of your own. Don’t give people that holier than thou attitude. The thing is: while you play around, while you allow everyone to feel good about being with you, you have to know who gets the most of your time and attention. These are the people that will have the most impact on you.
Communication Creates Connections
You need to know who you tell what. In his books, Making Great Decisions (formerly titled Before You Do) and Destiny, Bishop T. D. Jakes talks about the three classes of people you should be aware of in your life: Confidants, Constituents, and Comrades.
Girls in particular need to be careful about who they tell what. You can’t have communication without a connection. Most times connections happen first but sometimes communication is what creates connections.
Babe, you can’t tell your secrets to just anybody. Don’t tell them to constituents and comrades don’t even need to know a thing.
If you are a girl I recommend having a good female mentor who you can tell important things. A lot of girls share important things with males and before they know they find themselves unnecessarily hung up on someone. Be selective about who you tell what so you don’t put your life in the hands of the wrong person.
Choose the groups you join
And you have to carefully select the groups you join. Yes, all the way from the choir group to a school sports team to community associations. It has to be you who decides whether you need to join a group or not and what group you should join.
You can’t join a group because someone you know or happen to like has joined. And you can’t also join simply because someone said you should.
Can you add to the group? Can the group also add meaningful things to your life? How will this decision affect the present you and the future you?
Consider these things before you join any group. Because, as we all know, in the end, you will be the one to live with the consequences if things go wrong.
Be decisive when it comes to relationships and also about what role each person or group will play.
You’ll need to choose what you believe in and the type of church you worship. Personally, I believe there is God. I also believe you can’t do too well if you are not born again.
These two things, primarily, guide me when selecting the kind of church I want to join. But no matter what, I still pray before making choices especially when it has to do with joining a church.
What you worship and where you worship will have a huge impact on your life.
You have to be the one who makes the decision. And you also have to be careful and prayerful so you don’t end up in the wrong place.
I don’t know about you but I hope to settle down with that special person someday. Unless you plan to emulate one of the Apostles, you are going to get married.
A lot of people get this wrong. Others get it right but can’t keep it going because they are bad with keeping relationships. Immaturity beats them up silly.
Marriage is not a child’s plaything. If you ever want to be successful at it, your training should start when you are three years old. And when you are old enough, start attending seminars and reading books on marriage and keeping relationships. No two ways about that.
But when you know and understand the word of God, you won’t need to much external help.
Generally, here are a few things I’d like you to consider from a personal perspective.
You have to know that you can never have a good relationship with someone you can’t trust. One way or another the lack of trust will always creep up and spoil things for you.
You need to be able to trust this person to do the best for you and the family. If you want to spend the remaining days of your life fighting for a relationship, go ahead and marry someone you can’t trust. But if you want a good marriage, then get married to someone you can trust.
Look around and you will find that the best of marriages are occupied by the best of friends.
There is something about friendship that makes a relationship so good. They look out for each other, they forgive all the time, they sacrifice for themselves, and can’t bear to see the other person in pain. They are not blinded by love and they bluntly say the truth about any subject. When a friend messes up, you don’t beat about the bush without saying anything: you let them know they have messed up without putting them down or giving up on them. That’s how we deal with our friends.
Friendship works. Think about how good life can be when you are with your friend. If you marry a friend, apart from those times where life will try to tear you limb from limb, you will always have a good time with your partner.
According to Dr. Myles Munroe, who moved on to continue at a better place, singleness is not the time for loneliness. It is time for personal development – being a better you. It is a time to learn. A time to work on your character. It is a time to be the kind of person someone would like to spend the rest of their lives with, not a time to be given to “loneliness.”
If you want to attract value you have to be a person of value. And if you want to be able to recognise a person of value you need to be a person of value yourself. That’s how it works and you can’t cheat life. You need to be a person of value to be able to recognise a person of value.
Many people end up in the wrong marriage because they can’t tell value besides money and good looks. If the only kind of value you can find in yourself is money and good looks, you are bound to make the wrong choice when it comes to marriage.
Go deeper. Learn about the person’s purpose, goals, and dreams. You need to know if you can cope with the future they plan to have.
Look at their character and principles. How do they treat people they are not trying to please? Why do you think they are treating those people that way? This is important. I tell you: when the whole first-time love thing blows over, that is how they are going to treat you. You may want to see why people lie to you and get away with it.
They won’t be perfect. But they have to be reasonable.
So start now to develop yourself. Remember: value attracts value, and value recognises value.
Find your purpose for life. Work on your dreams. Be productive and committed where you find yourself. Read books. Attend seminars. Pay attention to personal hygiene and home-keeping. Learn stress management. Learn about relationships and be sure to learn what you can about the opposite sex.
God must be involved
But the biggest problem with the world is trying to build God’s institution with worldly principles. God started marriage. If you want it to work, you have to do it God’s way.
Here are three principles from the bible that work for marriage. The third works for every kind of relationship there is.
Love. A lot of people don’t believe in love because they have the knowledge problem. But every relationship has to be built with love. But be careful. Many people regret marrying someone they loved. They ignored the red flags and made love the ultimate reason. Love should not cause you to ignore red flags and money should not be the ultimate reason for choosing a partner either. There are a lot of factors to consider before saying “I do.” This is why you must read books, attend seminars, seek counseling, and above all, pray for God’s will, not your will.
The second is submission. And the bible advises wives to submit to their husbands. Men value appreciation and respect. So every woman must learn to appreciate and respect the men in their lives if they want to have a good relationship with them.
Thirdly, do unto others what you want others to do to you. This advice given by Jesus Christ, to me, is like the best advice for relationships.
Anyone who tries to make others feel good and happy; anyone who cares about the way others feel about the things they do will have a hard time hurting them.
These are the people that find it easy to love and submit, whether male or female. Because deep down they would always try to do what they can not to hurt others. They won’t be perfect. But they will make a good partner.
You have to decide the career path best for you. Careers are not just as simple as they were before.
When you decide on the kind of future you want to have, get all the information you can about the career you have chosen. This will help to you know the skills and courses you have to learn.
And when it comes to careers, no skill is wasted. Do well to learn the skills that bring out your talent. But don’t pass up the opportunity to learn something while you search for the ultimate thing you were called to do in life.
In today’s world, those who can combine skills from different careers happen to be the most creative. They consequently end up being very valuable where they work. Gone are the days where you couldn’t know English or Mathematics because you happen to be a carpenter or farmer. It is different now. If you must succeed in today’s world as a carpenter or farmer, you need to know at least the basics of Mathematics, English (or the dominant language in your region), and computing.
Think about what happens when an artist learns computer-aided designs. It’s a wonderful combination.
The best of people today are combining skills from different fields. So whatever career you choose, learn what you can along the way. And as T. D. Jakes would say, “if it is not the thing, it will be the thing that leads to the thing.”
If you want to have a good life, you have to be the one who makes major decisions.
Take up the responsibility. You are the one who knows exactly what you want. You are the one who is going to live with the consequences so you should be the one to decide.
Get the necessary information, make a decision, and pray to God about it. If you are still confused, ask a mentor or trusted friend. Start now to be decisive about your life: your Relationships, Faith, Marriage, and Career.
Don’t wait for power and resources to make a decision. Remember you don’t wait for power and resources, you have to decide to get the power and the resources otherwise you may never get them.
Start now to make good decisions for your future and your life. Take responsibility. Be decisive.