Making Decisions

We go through life continually making choices. The simple ones – like deciding what to have for dinner or what movie to go see – are usually fairly easy to make and have little impact on our lives. These types of choices are a preference at the moment and do not require a great deal of investigation. But what about the BIG decisions –

Which job to take?
Which city to live in?
Who to form a relationship with?

How should these types of decisions be approached when you feel confused?

A big part of the self-discovery process is paying attention to our feelings, looking deeply into our hearts and discovering what makes us feel good and what does not. We need to be very clear about what gives us energy and what saps us.

When approaching a BIG decision, it is important to be as clear as possible. Meditating is step number one. We use meditation not as a place to agonize over our choices, trying to figure it all out, but as a place where we can stop our thoughts about the choices and thereby stop any attachments we may have to the outcome. We may have hidden thoughts pulling us in one direction or another, thoughts that may be from a prior experience, a prior decade or a prior lifetime. We want to be free of all the “old stuff” before we decide what is best for us right here right now.

Let’s take a hypothetical situation. Suppose you need to choose between two places to live. Most people, weighing the pros and cons in a decision like this, would look at very specific attributes of each place – rent, safety, shopping bus line etc.

These are all very good things to look at before making this decision and should definitely be considered. But what we suggest is a deeper investigation, an investigation into the energetic nature of each choice and assessing, as best we can, how each place would make us feel. Feeling is the operative word here.

We can discover a lot by feeling the energy of a place. Check each neighborhood out at several different times of the day – nighttime included. Walk around. Talk to the neighbors. Stop in the shops. Does the landlord live there? Get a “feel” for it.

Next, sit with those feelings in meditation whether or not you consciously feel them. Dedicate a meditation to making a decision. Set your intent to come to a resolution before you begin. While in a calm, meditative state, ask yourself this question – “what does it feel like to live at ‘.…..?” Listen to your response. Say “I live at …….” out loud for each address. Observe how you sound saying it. Was one response firmer or more tentative? Was there any hesitation anywhere?

The thing is, we already have all the answers to our questions except our minds are so filled with noise the answers are hard to hear. The best way we know to quiet that noise is through meditation. When you have a regular practice, chances are much greater for you to access that quiet place inside yourself where your inner voice resides. By listening to yourself, you get to decide what’s right for you right here, right now.

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