The ice cream parlor was buzzing with the chattering voices of the excited kindergarten kids. Five-year-old kids stood in line to choose their flavor of the ice-cream. This may not seem a big decision for us adults. The important piece here is that these kids were using the power of choice, to choose the ice-cream flavor. Some kids were very clear about their choice of the ice-cream, some were not so sure. Indecisiveness is forgiven at this tender age!
Five year old’s grow up. Welcome to the adult world, where you have to make personal decisions every day. One thing that always remains constant is in every decision big or small we have the power to choose. So how do we know whether our choice is right or wrong? A million-dollar question!
When we have to advise anyone else, its simple. We are able to be objective and give our perspective, as we are not involved with the outcome of that decision. So, it’s easy for us!
Once we are in their shoes and have to face the consequences of the decision, our decision-making skills lose clarity and certainty.
Most commonly used phrase is “I took this decision, as I had no choice, I was forced to do it”. Rewind back to the kindergarteners’ ice-cream phase when you refused to eat the ice cream as your favorite cookies and cream was no longer available. Thus, even at a young age, you made a choice not to eat the ice-cream and threw a crying tantrum along with it. We all can empathize as you were just five! Strangely enough, we are still throwing these tantrums and blaming other people when we have to face the outcome which is not in our favor. Sadly, one cannot empathize anymore as we are no longer kindergarten kids!
There is a simple solution to put an end to this Blame Game. Certain facts need to be put into perspective.
1) Assess the situation and the capability of facing it, gauging your own strengths and weaknesses.
2) Keep emotions at bay and look at the situation from a distance, as a witness. Feeling emotional greatly diminishes the power of clarity. Stall the decision making when we are upset, frustrated, sad, jealous or in a negative frame of mind. First step is to calm these agitations, stabilize yourself and then take make your choices.
3) Look at all your choices and alternatives without judgement or bias. Be aware of the consequence of each choice you make. Are you prepared to be at peace once you walk the path you chose?
4) Last and not the least, ITS ALWAYS YOUR CHOICE. Even when we take unconscious decisions guided by another person, we are avoiding owning responsibility of the ramification of the action. We may convince ourselves that we did something to please our parents, children and portray ourselves in a self-pity mode, to justify the decision-making process. It’s a classic case of being in denial. This only extends our agony and agitation, as we continue to blame the circumstances around us. We never come to terms with the present moment.
The practice of Stillness and going within, is way to calm the agitations of the mind. The Silence enables the peaceful mind to enhance its perception, which eventually leads to clarity. Whichever direction we choose will be our conscious choice. Once we feel responsible for the choice we make, we will have an insight of the power of decision making emerging from within us.
Hence, be conscious and take responsibility for every decision. Be mindful that “we have to walk the path alone” and it is entirely “Our Choice”.
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