Whether it is a business you are trying to create and improve, a relationship you are unsure about, or just a situation in your life when you find yourself confused about what to do, making the right decisions can be one of the biggest challenges you will face. You can visit: https://www.nhsheroes.co.uk/
While I don’t think there is truly a “right” decision or a “wrong” decision for any particular occasion, I do believe there is a “best” or “highest” decision which we can and should do our best to achieve.
A “higher” or “best” decision will result in the path of least effort, ensuring that we are evolving ourselves with minimal resistance, while “lower” or “poor” decisions will require our lessons in life to much more painful and difficult to overcome.
Rational vs. Irrational Approach To Decision Making
Everyone has a different approach to decision making. Some people are very emotional – they react to a particular situation based on the way they feel about it. Other people are more rational – they analyze facts, weigh the probability of certain outcomes, and make a decision based on a logical and rationalized risk/reward conclusion. We learn to make logical decisions in school, but is logic really the right way to make the “highest” decisions?
While science tends to favor a rational approach, seasoned business professionals will tell you they use intuition and gut instinct all the time and could not succeed without it.
Rational approaches to decision making sound like a good approach, but a rational approach typically requires that we input information that we simply don’t have. We often don’t know what the probabilities are for the different outcomes that may occur and most rational approaches to decision making require that we do have this information.
Sure we can make a list of positives and negatives for each choice and try to weigh them, but how do we know which factors are more important vs. those that are less important?
Alternatively, it might make life easier if we simply had a strong “gut reaction” to a particular situation, which would naturally tell us what to do one way or the other.
If something just “feels” right or wrong, it would make decisions easier than trying to come up with some sort of logical formula based on assumptions. But how do we know for sure if whatever “feels” right is right, or if our emotional self is reacting to the wrong stimuli and forcing us to make poor decisions instead of good ones?
Using A Combined Approach To Decision Making
As with most dichotomies in life, I believe the answer to the rational vs. irrational debate lies somewhere in the middle. From my vantage point, I have determined that part of the key is timing. In other words, “when” a particular emotion occurs is more important than “if” a particular emotion occurred.
Likewise, “when” the facts and figures enter into the equation is more important than “if”. Good decisions start with “what is” and bad decisions start with “what if”.
I created a simple table so we can more easily visualize the difference between good and bad decisions. You’ll notice that there are both rational and emotional components to this type of analysis:
Good (High) Decision Bad (Low) Decision
-Starts out with “what is” which stems from existing facts and is naturally followed by inner enthusiasm – Starts out with “what if” which is a speculation of hopeful potential, but is not supported by current facts nor inner enthusiasm
– Obstacles have no bearing on the validity of the idea, they are speed bumps but not stop signs – Obstacles prove the idea is not valid, they are stop signs not speed bumps
– Fear of the possible outcome comes after your initial perception, which heightens your awareness and sharpens your perception of this choice – Fear of the possible outcomes precedes and molds perception of this choice
– Considers the benefits of all parties involved and comes from the heart – Emphasizes selfish fulfillment and comes from the ego
The Best Decisions Are Made In Times Of Clarity
Many times we force ourselves to make a decision when really it is not necessary to make any decision at all. Keep in mind that it is better to postpone a decision than to make a bad decision. Therefore, it helps to remember that the absence of clarity toward a particular situation probably means you are either about to make a bad decision, or that the highest and best decision is not ready to be made yet.
Good and high decisions are almost always clear and obvious, and leave you with a strong sense of certainty, while bad and low decisions are made in moments of confusion and uncertainty. If you cannot confidently proclaim to yourself that you are certain about a particular course of action, you may be better off to wait until a more confident moment arrives before making a decision.
The Danger of Half-Truths
When considering various situations in our lives, we often follow a course of action because we have determined it to be true and in line with our desires and intentions. However, in many cases, we end up feeling not entirely fulfilled about our situation.
If you are not happy or entirely fulfilled with your situation in life, it is most likely because something important – work, relationships, lifestyle – is not in line with your true self. A common reason for this, is because at some point or another, you have been drawn into what I call a “half-truth”.
A half-truth is basically something very close to the truth, so it attracts you in a similar way that the real truth would, but it is not the truth, and has in fact led you astray from your true path. An example could be a relationship with a person, a job you accepted, or a book you read that led you toward a belief that just doesn’t feel quite right.
The problem with the half-truth is that, because it so closely resembles the real truth, we can often not believe that it is not true. Often we will try to make small adjustments to our situation, believing we can “make the best of it” or “it’s our fault” and we are “not trying hard enough” to improve our situation.
A half-truth is dangerous because you can end up wasting much of your life chasing after a result that will never arrive from the path you have chosen. As close as it might seem to the “right path”, a half-truth is only partly true so it effectively leads us down the wrong path. In this way, a half-truth is more dangerous than an outright lie or deception, because lies are easier to discern – half-truths are not so easily recognized.
If a path were so obviously wrong for us, we would not choose it in the first place, and this would be an easy decision to make. However, half-truths have just enough truth in them for us to believe them to be true, so we follow them and devote resources to them without understanding why we are still unfulfilled.
Half-truths are very prevalent in society and may represent a person, workplace, course of study, religion, or other belief you might have adopted. The media, government, and powers that be help to reinforce half-truths in our lives to keep us distracted from the real truth.
Examples of Half-Truths:
– Education is important, therefore you must get a college degree to be successful in life
– Yogurt is good for you, therefore low fat yogurt is better
– You hate your job but you hope that eventually you will be promoted
– Your partner is often angry, ignores you, or treats you bad, but you stay with him or her anyway because “love hurts”
– Your prescription meds make you feel bad in some way, but you trust your doctor because a professional must know what is best for you
– You would love to be a “insert your dream profession here” but you don’t have enough “insert any reason – money, education, time, etc.”
– God said “thou shalt not kill” but since it is in the name of God, killing is OK, and therefore we can justify annihilating the Incas so we can ship gold back to Spain
The Difference Between Half-Truth and Real Truth
Again, what seems like a complicated problem actually has a very simple solution. The difference between a half-truth and the real truth is that a half-truth originates from an outside source or external influence, whereas the real truth can only come from inside of you.
In the “rush rush” hysteria of modern life, it is easy to accept a lot of half-truths because we are constantly looking for more of this or a better that – a bigger house, a nicer car, a career advancement, a better education for our kids, or any number of external stimuli to keep us temporarily happy or fulfilled.
Indeed, seeking truth from the inside might be perceived to be boring, hopeless, or simply impossible, because we are trained to believe that the things we want come from outside of us, not from within us.
Our paychecks, affection from our loved ones, praise from our co-workers, and the food on our plate all come from outside of us, so we constantly look outside of us for the things that make us happy. What we don’t realize is that this is the worst type of half-truth there is, because in reality, everything that fulfills you comes from the inside.
In addition, what most people find is that when they fully understand the truth of who they are and why they are here, all forms of wealth become attracted to them with far less effort.
People who are very successful in life do not get there by making choices that do not align with who they are, instead they excel by knowing themselves. This clarity of truth and knowledge about themselves makes it less likely that they will become distracted or held up by the deception of a half-truth.
So even if you want material success, fame, or some other external result in life, you will find it much easier to achieve success when you are doing what you know is right, and following your true path.
It is not wrong to desire material wealth, but it is unlikely you will achieve any great level of success until you learn to follow your highest and clearest self. And, depending on how far away you currently are from your true path, success and fulfillment may require a rather dramatic change from whatever it is that you are doing now.
Half-truth agents are people in your life who reinforce the half-truths you have decided to incorporate. A half-truth agent might be a drinking buddy who insists on getting drunk with you every weekend, because he or she is not happy doing anything else.
A half-truth agent might be a person who constantly has emotional issues they need to discuss with you, because they cannot seem to right whatever is wrong and so their problems continuously become your problems.
A half-truth agent could be a person in your family who always needs financial support, because their spending habits are out of control.
Half-truth agents will suck your energy, your resources, and effectively encourage you to stay on the wrong path by distracting you from your true path.
Half-truth agents are often not strangers, but people who are very close to you and therefore hard to ignore. This is why I call them half-truth agents, because if they were simply strangers with a bad attitude, they would have no effect on you, you could easily eliminate them from your life. However, because you have previously perceived their relationship to be important to you, and you have made an emotional investment in the relationship, a half-truth agent cannot be so easily ignored.
Since most of us have compassion toward others who need our time, our help, or our attention, we willingly give it, at the expense of running our own life into the ground. If allowed, a half-truth agent will keep us from achieving our own goals and dreams.
How To Identify Half-Truth Agents
The best course of action is to limit the influence of the half-truth agent is to first identify those people in our lives who are a net drain on our energy. These are the people who demand your time and attention when they have a problem, but don’t ever offer to help you with your problems. When I went through this analysis myself, I was shocked to discover just how many of the people in my life were a net drain on my energy and/or who were helping to keep me on the wrong path.
How To Identify Agents Of Truth
Thankfully, there are people who actually facilitate your true self and do not impose themselves on your time or energy like the half-truth agents do. Therefore, “agents of truth” can often seem less important and less involved in your life since they are not actively trying to draw your attention.
Usually, it is you who has to reach out to an agent of truth – those who will support your true self and path in life – because by definition that truth must start with you.
The people in your life who support you, who do not make excessive demands on your time and energy, and who are generally project love, confidence, or encouragement towards you – those are the people you should admire, respect, and spend time with.
How To Reduce The Influence Of The Half-Agent
Sadly, for many of us, half-truth agents far outnumber the agents of truth in our lives. The best course of action to reduce the influence of the half-truth agent is to begin limiting the amount of time and energy we offer them. If we gradually offer less and less energy to sustain them, they may eventually lose interest and look for other people to victimize. This process can be especially difficult if these people are family members, loved ones, friends, or coworkers – and they usually are, because rarely would we devote time to an energy sucking stranger or mild acquaintance.
To Change THE World, First Change YOUR World
In conclusion, we must realize that to make a positive impact on OUR WORLD, and by extension THE WORLD, we must save our energy for producing the types of positive behaviors that will keep us on our true path.
While it is fine to offer compassion and help to others, especially those you care for in life, you have to realize that if your help is not doing them any good, and they continuously depend on you for more time and energy no matter how much you give, it is THEY who have to find their own true path from within them. In fact, by helping to sustain their weaknesses by giving them the attention and energy they require, you are serving as a half-truth agent for them.
How To Apply This Chapter To Your Life
If you truly want to feel Fitter and Richer in 30 Days, think about a decision that you know you need to make but you are unsure of what course of action to take.
Write down the decision you are contemplating in the form of a question, and list all of the possible factors you are aware of that influence the decision. When you think about a particular course of action related to your potential decision, do you feel any sensations near your stomach or heart area? What do you think that means? Is your choice coming from a place of inner enthusiasm or fear? Who will be affected by your decision in a positive way and who will be affected in a negative way?