I find that I ask this question over and over again in all sorts of formats, but the bottom line is that unless we know what we want, we won’t/don’t/can’t have the lives we want to lead.
There are those who find decisions intimidating. They say they’d rather make a choice. Choice somehow seems less … permanent … than a decision. Either way though—choosing or deciding—you’re picking one thing over another.
If I decide to go to the movies, then I’m not going shopping at the same time. This is a silly example, of course. So, for higher stakes, if I decide to marry Jane, then I’m not marrying John, and that certainly changes things.
Deciding is an interesting process. In my God’s Dictionary, I wrote:
de- = from
-cædere = cutting away
The process of decision-making is fraught with anguish for some of us. Deciding is similar to choosing, yet with an important difference. Choosing works with things both tangible and intangible. Deciding almost always has an air of finality to it. This job or that job? This girlfriend? This fiancé? This apartment? That house? This Jaguar or that Jeep? Choosing seems to imply that we still have options; deciding implies that we leave certain options behind forever. Of course, the etymology of the word explains the reason.
Like incision, which means cutting into, decision means cutting away from. I find that when I make a decision and am unhappy with it, changing it usually means having to do what I call “emotional K.P.” Kitchen Police, a term from the military, is the least appealing kind of duty to draw. It’s not that bad. So I have to do clean-up. I think of the miles of litter sponsors on America’s highway system. There’s a section in Queens proudly bearing a sign with the name Bette Midler. She picks up the trash in the area. If Bette gets to do the garbage brigade, why not me? Or you? Ask: How can I cut away the discomfort around deciding today?
Decisions are clear to me when I approach them from the clear place inside me — my Divine Spark. Holy scissors make deciding easy.
I like the idea of holy scissors, don’t you?
So, Beloved, if life really does boil down to one question in any given situation, namely, what do you want?, hadn’t you better start really thinking about it?
What DO you want?
The thing is: once we get clear in the desire, the doing becomes effortless because we know we want the result.
When you don’t know what you want? Read next week’s blog.
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