I have never actually counted how many decisions I make a day but I am sure it is in the hundreds. I am sure every human (and animal for that matter) has the same experience. Just this morning, I was figuring out what to have for breakfast, which train to to get, where to sit on the train, the longer scenic route or the quick way to work...the list goes on. However, we only really notice our decisions when we have important decisions to make, especially if your mind throws up confusion i.e. you're not sure which emotion you are feeling. That's when the heart and mind really come into conflict. If that's not enough, we sometimes have the gut joining in too.
Decision making is actually an art-form requiring experimenting to find solutions and, drawing on our own experiences in the hope of getting it right. That's the thing, there is no answer sheet to see if we're making the right choice. This is why they say that decision making is a science and judgment is an art, which rather sums it up.
Alas though, decision making doesn't come with a 'Eureka' moment... you know, those moments when you suddenly know what to do. It still takes some time and letting your intuition figure out what you really want to do.
Personally, I find visualisation and meditation really helpful in tackling the conumdrum of decision making. I choose to meditate and imagine my two options are held in different hands and visualise taking different options. This technique allows you to notice which hand is lighter hence the option (at least in that moment) to take.
Try these meditations (below) to help calm down the conflict in your head (and elsewhere in the body):
Yes’ or ‘No’ Meditation
1. Make yourself comfortable and let your eyes close. Take a few moments to focus on your breath and let each breath relax you more deeply. Allow your hands to rest on your lap, with your palms facing upwards.
2. Now think about the decision you need to make and imagine that in one hand you are holding the word ‘yes’, and in the other hand you holding the word ‘no’. See the letters and feel their weight, sense their texture. Take a few moments to focus on the word ‘yes’. How does it feel? How do you feel? Do any images or sounds come to mind? Now take a few moments on the word ‘no’. How does it feel? How do you feel? Take as long as you would like to explore all the sensations, feelings, visions or music that go with the word ‘no’.
3. When you have a clear sense of ‘yes’ and ‘no’, you might want to ask questions of your intuition in your mind and sense the response. Explore this idea for a while. Then, when you are ready, you can open your eyes and come back to the room.
4. When you are finished, take a few moments to breathe and think about what your intuition has been communicating to you about your decision.
And if that doesn't work...
1. Make yourself comfortable and let your eyes close. Breathe and relax and let go of the thoughts or distractions of the day. Imagine yourself walking down a path and feel the ground under your feet. Take a few moments to notice what is around you and notice that the weather is just right for you.
2. While you are walking, go over the decision you have to make in your mind and consider what the options are in relation to this decision. Then number them. You might have two options or even more. As you are walking, a little way ahead the path breaks up into several paths. It splits into as many paths as you have possibilities in relation to your decision. When you come to the place in the path where the road divides, stop for a moment and notice that each path represents one of your options. Number the paths in any direction that is comfortable for you and let those numbers correspond to the numbers of your possibilities.
3. Take your time and take a medium breath in and out. Then slowly travel down one of the paths. Notice how you feel. Where does the path take you and how comfortable are you on this path? Does it feel right? Take as long as you want to explore this path. When you have finished, go back to the place where the paths meet.
4. Choose another path and explore it as you did the first one. Continue exploring until you have experienced each path. When you have finished, take another medium breath in and out. Then, when you are ready, open your eyes, back in the room.
5. Now take a few moments to reflect on your meditation and what you experienced. Contemplate which path felt right to you.