Saturday, April 30, 2016

Decisions, decisions

Sunrise at Ocean City
One of the most gratifying things about being a gainfully employed adult is being able to make your own decisions. Yet the things that can cause the most anxiety are some of these same decisions. If you’re miserable at work but think it might get better (when?), do you want to try to wait it out and see what happens, or plan your escape? What is your escape plan? Can you see a future with your significant other? Does he see a future with you? How long do you wait to see if this “together” future ever comes into existence? You realize you and your dear friend are drifting apart, partly because you’re both going through rough patches in life but she dismisses the severity of your present distresses. How do you approach that situation? Is it better to say nothing at all and hope the resentment will dissolve in future happier times?

With age, these decisions become more serious, the responsibilities greater, and the stakes higher. Wanting to make the most prudent decisions for your desired career trajectory. Not wanting your significant other to become the “one that got away.” Treading that delicate balance with your nearest and dearest. It’s like that psychology study that showed that people are happier with the choices they make if there were fewer options to choose from to begin with. With choices abound, how do we know we made the very best decision that will give rise to the best outcome?

These decisions are rarely so black-and-white if you’re entrenched in these situations. People who claim all the wisdom in the world to tell you the right way to live your life are, frankly, delusional and clearly have an inflated opinion of their own judgment. There often is no way to know a priori if something is absolutely the right decision to make, and no one’s judgment is infallible.

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