The Minimalist Guide to Indecision

How does one get past this block, this thing that feels like an impenetrable wall when decisions for our better interest need to be made?

How does one get past this block, this thing that feels like an impenetrable wall when decisions for our better interest need to be made?

There you are, stuck. Or, so you feel. Afraid to move out, afraid to move in. Afraid to leave the soul sucking job for a better life even though you know you are completely burned out. Afraid to leave the one person who is the bane of your existence even though you know deep down you should. Afraid to lean in, afraid to lean backward. So, on it goes.

Of course, the basis of this lack of prudent decisiveness is fear. The emotion, fear, is hard-wired into every human brain. It has served a vital role for our survival as a species. No one is fearless. It is a powerful emotion we all share.

The brain would just as soon suffer ongoing misery from a place of perceived safety than the thought of an unknown outcome from a different venture, risk, business decision, relationship, job or career. Some have termed this state comfortable misery. It’s not comfortable and it is misery nonetheless.

Comfortable misery is only perceived as safe because it is what is known. It is not a safe place in which to live. Fact is, it is a very dangerous place in which to live. Comfortable misery causes us to eat up the one commodity we are all running short of – time.

Fearing change might be worse than what currently exists, or take more energy, or require more money can coheres one into a state of benign resignation. So, people become stuck, sometimes paralyzed, by fear. I say, to hell with that. Life is too short.

How does one get past this block, this thing that feels like an impenetrable wall when decisions for our better interest need to be made? Like most situations in life where the human brain is concerned, there are no easy answers, Everyone’s path is different.

I will tell you what will help you to overcome fear of needed change. Let start with this quote by Usman B. Asif, “Fear is a darkroom where negatives develop.” Absolutely true. Scary things are much scarier in the dark. 

Overcoming fear is not about becoming fearless. It’s about bringing the negatives out into the light. We don’t have to struggle with the big, or even the little problems, in absolute silence.

Find people you trust and share your struggle with them. Telling what you fear the most to another human being will lessen the impact of the fear of the unknown. Hearing someone else’s story about how they dealt with a similar situation will have a liberating effect. This is the primary reason we have language, to share what we know for mutual benefit.

If needed, get professional help through counseling or coaching. This is your life. Your story. Hopefully, many chapters have yet to be written. Be the author of your own story. With each passing day and each turn of the page you can decide how your story unfolds.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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2 thoughts on “The Minimalist Guide to Indecision

  1. Like a deer frozen in the headlights, I can’t begin to count the many times of my indecisiveness and fear of movement. Clark, you are right. We feel stuck, afraid to move, and fear the unknown. I love your analogy of the darkroom and negatives. I love your well thought out and executed writings! They are your miniature pieces of work which speak volumes! You are well spoken and inspiring. All put together these pieces are your MASTER

    Once upon a time, there was a young girl, probably about six years old, who was afraid to open her eyes. She was so afraid that something awful would happen if she dared to do so. She was convinced that even cracking those eyes even a sliver of the way open, would cause her harm from the unknown. IT would consume her. She wrongfully thought that she would literally be hurt and, so night after night those eyes would remain tightly shut through each little noise. One night, she boldly opened an eye. Nothing happened. Now, Clark, here’s the part where you talk about my epiphany!