When I was young and everything was new, and most of what I was experiencing was for the first time, I suddenly became aware of the power of the decision process. Of course, at that time, a good portion of my decisions were formulated by the decisions of my parents. But I at least imagined that I had a modicum of control over my life.
By the time I was in my teens and more specifically, when I left home for the first time, I had an opinion on everything and was all too glad to share them. From my lips to Gods ear as they say. The wisdom of youth personified. But slowly, I came to realize that decisions carry with them responsibility. They bear consequences. Throwing out our opinions and ideas without thought beforehand can be both dangerous and damaging. More then one friendship has suffered due to an ill thought comment. More then one loss, physical or phychological has been predicated by an ill chosen statement or deed.
Decisions are not always easy as you know, but we have to make them regardless. You see, not making a decision is in fact a decision. You cannot avoid them. Most are small and are driven by common sense. But others are more substantial and are driven by our values, and we will be tested. There will be times when all our options will seem wrong. There is no right decision per se.
I am reminded of the story of a kid in a candy store. His dad had offered to buy him a treat. The child wandered around looking at all the choices. “What should I choose? What should I choose?” He pondered. “Come on son, we don’t have all day” his father said. But the boy had so many favorites, he was hard pressed to choose. He would pick up one and put in back in favor of another. He just couldn’t make up his mind. Finally, his father’s patience ran out and he took the boy by the hand and they left the store empty handed. The boy was in tears of course. His inability to make a decision had left him with nothing.
At some point in our lives, we are all that boy. We have found ourselves in our own private candy store and if our decision was not to make one, we too were left with nothing. And if your failure to do so is due to the fear of making the wrong one, I can assure you that no one has ever been found guilty of only making the right ones. In the end, the greater danger is that if we make no decision at all we end up going nowhere and accomplishing nothing.