Decision making, perhaps ranks first in the list of toughest skills to master and when the issue on hand is subjective one needs nerves of steel to be decisive. The process of decision making can be broadly categorized into two – objective decision making or impulsive decision making. Objective decision making can again follow two different approaches – deciding by eliminating the untenable or choosing the most favored option. Even impulsive decision making can be an outcome of gut feeling, irrational exuberance, illogical elimination or a random pick which is an outcome of a systematic process of elimination using an external aid be it tossing the coin, drawing straws or picking up a chit or lottery. Despite having such a wide variety of methods to make a decision, there are times when the logical thinking clashes with one’s sixth sense or the situation demands that a fair method be adopted to give a fair chance to two opposing sides to make a choice (e.g. choosing which team would bat first in a cricket match) . A way out of such predicaments then would be to flip a coin and…
… as the coin is suspended in the air on its trajectory upward and on its spiral downward one has to quickly choose between heads or tails and assign a decision to the choice. The outcome then is completely random. However in exercising your choice, you have given in to the choice that has an edge in the deepest recess of your heart. The outcome of the flip of the coin then is purely a matter of chance and yet there is a sense of contentment in that decision. E.g. The captain of a team has to decide what course of action he/ she will take on winning a toss. If the toss is lost, the decision on what to do is forced by the coin.
- On what basis would you choose 4 cards at random from a deck of shuffled cards?
- What other alternatives can you think of to replace flipping a coin?
- Your mother wants to watch the final episode of a TV serial. Unfortunately at the same time there is the finals of your favorite sport. To compound matters, a close elderly relative is unexpectedly coming over and he/ she does not have any interest in TV and is more likely to spend time in meditation which requires peace and quite. How will you attempt to tackle this situation?
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Things turn out best for people who make the best of the way things turn out. Anon
Opportunity beckons at every turn, but most times we see them as obstacles that disrupt the smooth flow of our life. We tend to evaluate happenings in the light of what we would wish to happen rather than seeing it as surprises, chances or a great break that we must use to the full. For example if one fails an exam the immediate reaction is one of defeat, hurt, shame and pain which is justified under the circumstances. However if one were to see that failure as an opportunity or a chance or a break , one would immediately make the connect that perhaps we are not cut out for it or that we need to pursue something that enthuses us and this is the right time to make that move.
Many of us are conformists and this poses the big problem of adjusting to change or even visualizing even the remote possibility of some opportunity in problems. The tried and tested ways of life are safe options which have very little risk attached to it and so the vast majority of us try desperately to follow the same path. In this pursuit, we suppress our own personal preferences, give in to social, family and peer pressure and turn a blind eye to any alternatives that may fleetingly make an appearance. Ask yourself if you regularly follow a set routine every morning or are you disturbed if some events throw your plans out of gear. Eg. You are a coffee addict and cannot function with your cuppa. Unfortunately one morning you just can’t seem to find the coffee jar. How you react to this situation is perhaps an indicator of how much of a conformist you are.
There is a large section of the population that loves to avoid responsibility and who won’t hesitate to apportion blame. They will find excuses for not playing their part well and end up portraying a ‘poor me ‘syndrome to ensure that they are not blamed. They will go all out to find lacunae in the planning and execution which cannot be linked back to them. These people actually also love to wallow in self pity and many of them even enjoy the attention and sympathy they get. They actively seek out issues to shirk all responsibility and quickly find a fall guy to pass blame to if events don’t follow the expected or planned schedule. More often than not these people attain moderate success and are critical by nature. The bureaucracy is quite often staffed by people with such a mentality.
Success is ordained for those who are passionate about what they want for they seek it out in the complex maze called life. Thos who don’t stop to apportion blame, those who take responsibility for all that they do, the people who are prepared to struggle hard, take risks and grasp opportunities are optimists with a mission. They are the ones who somehow manage a toe hold in the door of destiny and by grasping every little opportunity that comes their way attain success. To them every set back is a chance to pit their wits against; they never stop to find excuses but seek to find the fault and correct it. Look at a marathon runner who has to practices for hours on end exerting themselves till they nearly collapse. There is no guarantee that they will even complete a marathon in a proper race much less win it. What drives and motivates them is the real possibility that they will not only complete the race but win it too.
Remember: “We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations.” Charles R. Swindoll
- Read the poem ‘ The Psalm of Life’ by H.W. Longfellow. Click on the following link to see a commentary on the various verses of the poem. http://poweract.blogspot.com/2009/12/psalm-of-life-commentry.html
- Jot down 3 difficulties that you faced in the past week. Now try to reframe these as possible opportunities for you to have leveraged. To understand how there are opportunities in difficulties click on the following link and read the well known short story The Verger by Somerset Maugham http://sinden.org/verger.html
This post is courtesy www.actspot.com
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