Pretty Cool Ways To Make Great Choices and Choices
Do I starve or do I steal? Do I run with the apple or do I saunter? Do I run into the alley or down the street? Do I resist arrest or go quietly? Do I lie to the judge or do I tell the truth? Do I accept the sentence calmly or do I scream? Do I find the will to survive this prison ship or do I give up? Do I bemoan my transportation on this prison ship or do I seek to find a positive in it? Do I believe I will survive or do I not? Do I let their treatment of me turn me into an animal or do I continue to believe in myself and my ability to eventually have a better life? Do I carry hatred in my heart or do I forgive? Life really is a series of choices that shape your destiny.
I was once asked the following questions. The understanding I gained from answering them changed the way I saw my life:
- Who is in control of your life?
- Who is responsible for the choices you make?
- What is your life today a result of?
- What will your life tomorrow be a result of?
- Does your past equal your future?
The life you are living today is the result of the choices you have made in the past in relation to who you would spend time with, what you would learn, what you would believe, whether to give up or keep going, whether to stay in a relationship, whether to smoke or drink and so on. It is in your moments of choice that you forge your future. The life you live in the future will be a result of the choices you make from this point forward.
Is it possible to be in a situation where you have no choice? I have not been able to find one. Even when we are threatened with a gun or death, we still have choices (none of them may be fabulous, but they are still choices).
When you understand that you are in control of your life and you are responsible for the choices you make, making change is easier, you feel happier and can more easily achieve your goals. You can make choices that empower you and choices that don’t. How do you determine which choice to make?
Which Choice Do I Make?
It is an unfortunate circumstance, that often in life, you are required to make your biggest choices in times of personal crisis when you are probably ill equipped to do so. In addition to using the techniques in Chapter 8 in relation to emotions, this chapter contains a number of techniques to help you make better choices.
There are a number of ways to make choices. It appears that the best choices are those made using both your intellectual and intuitive abilities. The techniques we examine in this chapter for making choices are:
- A list of pros and cons (a purely intellectual process although you often go with your gut feeling anyway).
- The 8-step decision making process (intellectual process).
- The “feeling” process (intuitive process).
- The intuitive first response process (intellectual plus intuitive process).
- Muscle testing (intuitive process).
- Dowsing (intuitive process).
Remember – There are no “right” and “wrong” decisions, just different outcomes that may arise from the choices you make.
Some of the following techniques enable you to access your unconscious or intuitive response. If you read them and say to yourself, “That’s ridiculous!” then it is precisely the technique to use. The aim is to encourage your very loud conscious mind to buy out of the process for a while so you can access your unconscious or intuitive mind. The easiest way to do this is to engage in a process that your conscious mind thinks is silly. If you persist in continuing with the activity the conscious mind says, “This is absurd, I am out of here”. This is a fantastic outcome as your unconscious mind then has the space to be heard.
Pros And Cons
This technique works by getting a sheet of paper and dividing it into 2 columns. The left hand column is for the “pros” or good things relating to the possible choice, the right hand column is for the “cons” or negative things relating to the possible choice.
You can take this process one step further and allocate weightings to each of the pros and cons and see which side comes out in front.
The 8 Step Decision Making Process
You can also make choices by working through the 8-step decision making process.
- Step 1 – Define the problem – Be specific as vague descriptions lead to vague solutions. If a number of problems are tied together, separate them and work on each problem separately.
- Step 2 – Work out goals for each problem – Ask yourself, “What is the best thing I can do to resolve this problem?” Keep the focus on things that you can do.
- Step 3 – Brain storm possible solutions – Come up with as many solutions as you can think of and write them all down, even the whacky ones.
- Step 4 – Rule out any obviously poor options – Look for all the ideas on your list that are unrealistic or not likely to be helpful and cross them out.
- Step 5 – Evaluate your options – Now you become the judge. Go through the options that are left and write down the advantages and disadvantages of each one.
- Step 6 – Identify your best options – Look at the remaining options and pick the one that is most practical and potentially helpful.
- Step 7 – Implement the best option – Take action.
- Step 8 – How did it go? – What happened? Did it work? What worked well? What would you do differently next time? Remember to be kind to yourself. You did the best you could with what you had and knew at the time.
The “Feeling” Process
This process requires you to determine what it feels like when you make a great decision compared with what it feels like to make a poor decision. Use the following steps:
- Step 1 – Work out the choices you have available to you in the situation you are facing.
- Step 2 – Think of a great decision you have made in the past. Notice the feeling you get, where it is located, whether it vibrates. Is it heavy or light? What colour is it?
- Step 3 – Now think of a poor decision you have made in the past. Focus upon the decision and notice the feeling you get, where it is located, its size, its vibration, its weight and colour.
- Step 4 – Now consider your available choices. Notice the feeling associated with each choice. Those options that give rise to a similar feeling to the good decision you have made in the past are better options than those that do not.
The Intuitive First Response Process
In 2006, researchers at the University of Amsterdam found that the larger the decision you have to make, the more important it is that you seek help from your unconscious. The researchers found that the best way to make important decisions was to:
- Gather all facts into your conscious mind by getting the necessary information.
- Distract your conscious mind and ask your unconscious mind to make the decision (the researchers did this by having the research subjects play board games and then asking them to give an answer very quickly without thinking).
The researchers found that the unconscious appears to have a greater capacity to make complex decisions than the conscious mind.
Muscle testing is a means of accessing your unconscious.
You can do this by using interlocked fingers, by pushing down on a finger that is held rigid or by pushing down on your knee when your foot is resting on its ball.
You ask a question first to which you know the correct answer (being either a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’) and then push or pull as appropriate against the muscle that has been stiffened. Notice whether it is easy or difficult to push or pull. Then ask a question to which you know the answer is the opposite (being either a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’) from that which you asked before and push or pull as appropriate against the muscle that has been stiffened. Notice whether it is easy or difficult to push or pull. Once you have worked this out, you have your answer response for ‘yes’ and ‘no’.
Be careful how you frame your question and then ask the question you seek to know a ‘yes’/’no’ answer to and push or pull against the stiffened muscle. Whether it is easy or difficult to push or pull against it tells you whether the answer to your question is ‘yes’ or ‘no’.
The phrasing of the question is very important. I never use words such as ‘should’ as it makes for really a rather meaningless question. I ask instead, “Would it result in the best outcome for all people concerned if I were to…?” or “Is it highest wisdom for me to …?”
Dowsing is a means of accessing your unconscious. To dowse requires you to obtain a fairly light object fastened to a string or chain. I use a piece of cotton through a ring. Some people use a crystal on a chain. The process goes like this:
To determine the response for ‘yes’, ‘no’ and ‘other’
- Hold the end of the string and lay the object (crystal, ring etc) on a surface.
- Ask a question to which you know the answer is ‘yes’. For example, I ask, “Is my name Sandra?”. After asking the question I raise my hand so that the object is lifted from the surface and wait to see which way it moves. For me, the ring begins to swing in a clockwise direction. Note the direction for your ‘yes’ response and return the object to the surface.
- Ask a question to which you know the answer is ‘no’. For example, I ask, “Is my name Wilhelmina?”. After asking the question I raise my hand so that the object (crystal, ring etc) is lifted from the surface and wait to see which way it moves. For me, the ring begins to swing in an anti-clockwise direction. Note the direction for your ‘no’ response and return the object to the surface.
- To determine the response for ‘other’ (neither yes nor no), I ask to be shown the response for ‘other’ and raise my hand so that the object is lifted from the surface. For me, the ring begins to move in a backwards and forward motion. Note the direction for your ‘other’ response and return the object to the surface.
You can now begin to ask questions about choices that are available to you and identify your unconscious or intuitive response by the way the object moves after you have asked the question. As with the other methods for accessing your unconscious pay close attention to the questions you ask as your unconscious mind is very literal.
If you are getting strange responses, go back and reconsider the question you have asked.
I hope you have enjoyed and will have fun using some of these techniques for helping you to make good choices in life.