GIVE YOUR DECISIONS, NOT YOUR REASONS
I’ve often been told that I don’t rant. I make a point and leave. Of all the things that I hear about myself, this one pleases me a little more than others. And that’s because this is a trait that I have consciously and conscientiously cultivated over time.
Like most of us, over the years, I have expended a lot of energy in defending my decisions. To family, friends, sometimes even to random strangers. Maybe I needed to look good or I was scouting for validation. Either which way it was draining exercise. Not only was I wasting my time and breath, I also increasingly realised that I was allowing self-doubt to creep in. I felt like I was constantly looking over my shoulder expecting to fall on my face any minute. This was disturbing and I essentially needed to put an end to this pattern.
When we get into justification mode, we allow people into our mind space. Some of them tend to mess it up. Consequently, every time we set ourselves up for something, we subconsciously spend a lot of energy on how to make it look right. It clouds our judgement and we end up with bad decisions. Let no one come between you and your intentions. Our mind should be guarded like a fortress. Subject everyone to minute scrutiny to see who gets in and who doesn’t.
Before we take a decision, we may look outward for advice but once our mind is made up, resist the urge to explain. People may badger you or take you on a guilt trip but resist the urge. And you’ll be surprised these same people adapt. They learn (some grudgingly so) to appreciate your boundaries.
The only one you owe an explanation to, is you. To an extent your family or the ones who are going to be affected by the decision may need to know but sometimes even they don’t. The onus of your actions is on you and the consequences are solely yours to bear. Put yourself behind the wheel. Take charge of your decisions. Put an end to backseat driving and tell me how it feels.
I’ll leave you with some words of advice that Lord Mansfield had given to an acquaintance “Decide promptly, but never give any reasons. Your decisions may be right, but your reasons are sure to be wrong.” He said this in the late 18th century. Look at us, three centuries later we are still struggling with it.
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