Happy Freakin’ Friday!
It’s time again for my weekly missive to you with the subject that I’m thinking about – and believe you might want to think about as well. Today that subject is making good decisions.
You can make a pretty compelling argument that the level of your decision making determines how healthy, happy, and prosperous you will become. For me, a big part of the equation is keeping my mind continually operating at a calm, rational, and logical level, never being pulled too strong in any direction by emotion. (And clear of pointless, vapid, or trivial distractions.)
You’re probably familiar with the concept of elite athletes and their ability to “slow the game down.” They practice and do drills, over and over, so when a critical game situation arises, they can count on a composed mind and muscle memory to pull them through. There is a similar dynamic in high stress training for positions in the military, police, and medical fields. The same model works for life in general.
There are many things you can do to prevent yourself from becoming overwhelmed by a sudden crisis or unexpected events. Obviously, you can’t practice for everything that’s going to be thrown at you in life. But you can still set yourself up with a mindset to win.
A few foundational things that many people overlook are eating right, regular exercise, and getting enough sleep. This makes a huge difference in your immune system, physical energy, and a tranquil mind. You think more lucidly, your emotions remain under control, and you execute superior decisions. (You already know this; I’m just reminding myself.)
You must guard against information overload and overstimulation. Never take your phone to the bedroom when you retire. Set aside some “no device time” to unplug during the week. And don’t subscribe to a bunch of breaking news alerts. Meditation can be very helpful here as well.
Keep your brain supple and creating new neural pathways. Practice sudoku, crossword puzzles, and other mental challenges. Schedule thinking time once a week. Really mark this in your calendar and make it a sacred, no-device time as well.
Another thing that makes your decision-making process better is eliminating unnecessary decisions. I’m always looking for a single decision that can eliminate a thousand follow up decisions. Every time I go out to eat there are dozens of choices of what to drink. Since pretty much all but one of them are unhealthy, I stick with bottled still water every time. I’ve been eating the same egg white omelet every day after my workout, for the last 15 years. Yes, it’s boring. Buy I believe food is meant to nourish not entertain, so I’ve eliminated 5,475 unnecessary decisions by doing that. I make “policies” for frequent requests. (Example: I no longer write endorsements for upcoming books unless the author is a close personal friend. That saves me a dozen or more decisions a month.) Think about any situations that you can make one decision that negates the need for many future ones.
Perhaps the most important consideration in decision making is committing to make the difficult ones without regard for short term pain avoidance. People willing to make hard decisions have an easy life. People who only make easy decisions end up living a hard life.
New on the podcast: Unleash Your Creative Innovation
Here’s a “Back in the Day Replay” for you. The Prosperity Decision https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OhXk4rc2PPE
Thought of the Day: When you live in the past, your tormentor today is your Self, left over from yesterday. When you live in the future, you miss the moment. Learn from the past and intend the future. But always celebrate the present.
P.S. The 2022 dates have been finalized for my Author Apprenticeship Program. If you have an extraordinary book gestating within you that you want to bring into the world, check the details here: https://www.randygage.com/author-apprentice-program/
Previous post: Forgiving Yourself