How To Deal With Indecision

“People say I’m indecisive, but I don’t know about that.” – George Bush

“Ummm… I’m not sure…” We all suffer from indecision at times. If we are not careful, this can become a debilitating problem which feeds on itself. Indecision is often related to lack of self confidence and a tendency to worry about potential problems. To overcome indecision we need to have the faith to follow our intuition, bearing in mind that sometimes it is not what we do, but rather how we do things that is important.

Both Options Can Work

“Indecision is often worse than wrong action.” – Henry Ford

Sometimes we feel that it is of vital importance to choose the right course of action. We feel that one choice must be the ‘right’ one and the other option ‘wrong’. However, this is often a mistake. What is important is how we make use of our choices. Maybe we have a choice between going to two different places; as long as we have the right attitude we can cultivate happiness wherever we go. If we are constantly worrying about our decision, then we will not be able to enjoy life even if we choose the so called ‘right action’.

I know a friend who regrets a choice he made at age 21 (not getting a certain job). He blames this for unhappiness in is life 15 years later. This is a mistake as the choice is much less important than he thinks; life is what we make of it and is not just about making the ‘right choices’. Don’t fret about making the perfect choice; just retain the best attitude to wherever life might take you.

Generate Self Confidence

Indecision often occurs because we lack self confidence and doubt our abilities. Perhaps we would like to take a trial for a sports team, but we fear whether we are good enough. The internal debate becomes about whether we should risk taking the trial. In this case, we should not be worrying about our potential limitations. Instead, we should follow our instinct – we have much less to lose than our mind would admit. If we ignore our misplaced anxieties, it will be easier to follow new choices, without worrying about whether it is worth taking the step.

Don’t Worry About What Others Expect You To Do

Related to the previous point is the concern about what others may think of our decisions. We all face choices where our instinct is to go one way, but then we worry about what people will think of our decision. We can take the advice of other people, but, if we really feel one course of action is the right choice, that is what we should do. Don’t give too much importance to the opinions of society; it is your life, not theirs.

Speak With A Friend

Sometimes the indecision can go round our mind in circles, creating a downward spiral of indecision. When this occurs it is good to discuss the problem with a trusty friend. We should not ask the friend to choose for us. But, talking about the issue will help to clarify the problem and get a better perspective; once we have done this it will be easier to choose.

You Won’t Regret Being Kind

If you are having difficulties choosing, consider your motives. Sometimes we want to take a selfish approach, but, some inner conscience is holding us back creating indecision. In these circumstances, we will not regret being kind to others, but, if we act only for our self interest then we often will.

Set Priorities

In life there are always things that we won’t have time to do. We can’t do everything nor should we try. What is important is to have a clear idea of our priorities – family, relationships, our inner life, sport or whatever. When we are faced with decisions, we can quickly refer to our priorities. Maybe your boss wants you to work overtime – the extra money would be nice, but, if you are clear about prioritizing your family life then it will be much easier to immediately say no. It is not possible to have the best of all worlds. We cannot expect to dedicate everything to our career and also spend quality time with our friends and relatives.

Nothing Ventured Nothing Gained

Sometimes we become indecisive because our mind is worrying over all the potential problems. Rather than looking at the problems consider the opportunities. An indecisive mind will always pick up on drawbacks of decisions. Focus on the potential of the situation and this will help make your more decisive; when an opportunity comes along go for it.


Tejvan Pettinger lives in Oxford where he writes on issues of self improvement and self development. He updates a blog Sri Chinmoy Inspiration. Recent blog posts include Listening to the Inner Voice.

Image by DerrickT.


Erin shows overscheduled, overwhelmed women how to do less so that they can achieve more. Traditional productivity books—written by men—barely touch the tangle of cultural pressures that women feel when facing down a to-do list. How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.

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