When Making BIG Decisions
“Our lives are a sum total of the choices we have made.”
Every decision we make shapes our future and some decisions make a bigger impact and can alter the course of our lives drastically. So what do we do when faced with difficult choices and all the options seem ‘right’ for different reasons?
In Episode 174 of the Are You Being Real Podcast, New York Times bestselling author, Jake Greene, shares examples that tackle this very question. An interesting one in particular is the story of when his friend, Noam Pikelny, told him he was debating between making a down payment on a house or buying an antique banjo that produced amazing sound. Jake, wanting to give his friend sound logical advice, told him to go with the house.
What he didn’t quite understand at the time was that his friend was one of the best banjo players alive (currently a member of Punch Brothers, a bluegrass supergroup.). Noam was self-aware enough to follow his gut and know that he was going to maximize the use of the banjo and make the purchase worth his time and money so he went for it. He also knew he may have always regretted not buying it and taking advantage of a once in a lifetime opportunity.
We all will be faced with big, important, and tough decisions throughout the course of our lives and we need to be in tune with ourselves enough to know what their effects could be. One of the most important things Jake shares with us in this is episode is the importance of looking at both what makes sense for our minds (the logical) and also what moves and excites us (the heart) – carefully cherry picking the opportunities that will truly serve us and not just go with the shiny ones that Jake describes in detail on the podcast as ‘wish fulfillment.’
When faced with a big decision, we should ask ourselves:
•Am I trusting my gut or just doing what I think I am supposed to do?
•Will I deeply regret not pursuing one of the options I’m considering?
•Am I ready to live with my decision and move forward confidently, no matter the outcome?
It’s wise to seek out advice and the opinions of others, just as Noam did with Jake. But at the end of the day, what matters is what you think and what feels real for you. Out of the seven billion people on this planet, you may be the only person in the world that can see a particular opportunity when it’s staring you in the face.
Take time to think things through, then trust yourself. Whether you decide to go with the secure house or that one-of-a-kind metaphorical ‘banjo,’ I hope you will live it up in your home or use that banjo to play some sweet music to the fullest.
PS: Give Episode 174 of the podcast a listen. Jake drops many valuable takeaways (in addition to the banjo one), as we talk about the importance of owning your unique story, and how we present ourselves on social media.
PPS: Have you had a life-changing ‘banjo’ moment in your own life that you’d like to share with the team? We’d love to hear from you! We’re always looking to read/hear/see interesting stories from our readers and listeners.