DECISION MAKING MADE SIMPLE

We are faced with a myriad of choices every single day – from what to eat for breakfast to what kind of coffee to order from Starbucks. Some choices are trivial, while others are tragic, if we make a mistake. Buying the wrong coffee drink is not as damaging compared to placing our money in the wrong investment.

But in making decisions, here’s a principle I’d like to share:

When values are clear, decisions are simpler.

Simpler doesn’t mean easier. But when our priorities are in place, then the decisions will be plain and straightforward.

Allow me to illustrate.

For me, family time is a clear value. Since the Christmas parties in Manila have started, how I wish I can attend all of them. There are many friends both from grade school and high school I haven’t seen in a long time. Relatives who are from out of town are setting up reunions left and right. Moreover, there are many parties from the different departments and ministries from the church.

But if I go to every one of them, that would mean, I would be out many nights in December. Advent nights would be missed, certain Christmas family traditions would be dropped, and dinner times with the kids would be compromised.

Another example is in the area of finances. If education is a value, then buying the new iPhone would come in second to paying your son’s tuition fee.

If relationship with God is a value, then spending the first moments after you wake up connecting with Him through His Word and prayer will be a priority rather than checking your Instagram or Twitter.

Simpler doesn’t mean easier. Saying no to friends’ Christmas parties is hard. Sticking with your jurassic Nokia 5110 (haha) instead of buying a new iPhone is torture. Stopping yourself from getting lost in the cyberworld early in the morning before connecting with Jesus is quite a challenge these days. But because the value is clear, then the decisions are simpler.

As we begin this week, may we remember our highest value – Jesus.
As Pastor Joey Bonifacio would say, “God who is the most valuable so valued you that He gave us Jesus, who is the most valuable to Him.”

And as we put Him first, remember what Proverbs 3:6 says, “In everything you do, put God first, and he will direct you and crown your efforts with success.” (TLB)

Have a great week!

MAKING TOUGH DECISIONS

Part of leadership is making the call.  Decision making is inevitable.  When you don’t make decisions, there are repercussions.  Making a calculated risk is better than not making any.  You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.

Here are a few things I try to do when I’m faced with a decision:

1. Ask God for help.

This would be on the top of the list.  Obviously, I am not omniscient.  I can’t see the end from the beginning.  But I know He does.  So getting wisdom from Him would be a good idea, don’t you think so?

2. Weigh your options.

Listing down the positives and the negatives will be necessary.  You don’t want to dive into a decision without knowing the consequences of either options.  You may not see all the pros and cons (which is why #1 is important) but you need to do your best to find them out.

3. Seek others’ perspectives.

I’ve always said that I can’t work without a team.  How come?  I know that I don’t have the monopoly of all the ideas.  I do have blind spots.  So do you.  You’ll need to ask people’s guidance, advice, experience on the matter you’re facing to help you make an intelligent decision.

4. Once you’ve made a decision in your mind, figure out how to communicate it.

This is where a lot of people make a mistake.  They decide and it doesn’t matter what happens, who gets hurt or how the pieces land.  As long as I’ve made the decision, then that’s it!  Wrong.  You have got to navigate through certain circumstances, emotions, issues and possible consequences.  I try to rehearse in my mind and sometimes even aloud how I will communicate the decisions I’ve made and pre-empt the question “why”.

5. Go for it.

When I’ve done all these, I go for it.  With much prayer, after doing my homework and seeking counsel, I go for it.  Sometimes, delaying things make things worse.  An indecision is actually a decision – to not do it at the time when it’s best to do it.

Hope this helps.

We can gather our thoughts, but the LORD gives the right answer. Commit your work to the LORD, and then your plans will succeed. We can make our plans, but the LORD determines our steps. (Prov. 16:1,3,9, NLT)