Lately I have been struggling with making any decisions at all. If you ask me a question that requires me to decide between one thing or another my brain will shut down and you will get a blank stare. Just deciding what to write in today’s blog post was almost more than I could do. We all make decisions at least 1000 times a day.
- Am I going to get up this morning?
- Who will I be today?
- What do I want for breakfast?
- What am I going to wear?
- Am I going to drive the speed limit?
- Do I need gas?
- Will I snack or wait for lunch?
- Will I use good manners with this person?
- Do I want fries with that?
- ? ? ? ? ? ?
With all this decision-making, it is not surprising that many of us would rather not make any extra decisions. Most people suffer from Decision Fatigue in one form or another. A depletion of mental energy and lack of will power.
My Single Decision of the Day
Every day of my life I have made one decision that almost totally eliminated my ability to make any other decisions for the day. What is this decision you ask? Do I get up this morning or do I pull the blankets over my head and call it quits? When you feel so depressed that your life feels meaningless it becomes a very serious question that you ask yourself every day.
I spent most of my teenage years feeling suicidal and that maybe the world would be a better place without me. I knew in my heart it wasn’t true, but that dragon in my brain, Bip, just wouldn’t leave it alone. Sometimes Bip and my heart would argue for hours about this one single question. Luckily, I have a close relationship with my family and my God that allowed my heart to win this argument.
How To Make a Decision Only Once
Because my daily decisions were based on living or dying I was always exhausted and didn’t care about anything else. Something had to change in the way I was making the decisions. I decided that I would make my decisions once. Once I had decided, it was just a matter of follow through. Here are the decisions that I made as a teenager:
- I will get up every morning and participate in life.
- I will attend all my education classes both religious and regular.
- I will have a B+ grade point average.
Now It Is All About Follow Through
By making those three decisions I did not have to decide any of the following:
- Do I have what it takes to go to school today?
- Will I pay attention in class?
- Will I do my homework?
- Will I practice my music?
- Will I eat?
- Will I talk to people?
With the most important decisions made all I had to do was follow through. I could focus my mental energies elsewhere.
It wasn’t as hard as you might think to stick to those decisions. Whenever I began to question it I would just remind myself that the decision had already been made so I didn’t need to worry about it. It is amazing how much pressure that took off me. Of course, it is probably why I developed Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, but more about that later.
The Questions I Hate the Most
We all have questions that we dread every day. The one that I hate the most is, “What’s for dinner?” This must be faced early in the day and the decision made before lunch. If this does not happen it is more likely that we will have soup and grilled cheese, pancakes or hotdogs.
What daily question do you dread the most? Do you answer it? Or do you let someone else answer it?