3 Simple Questions to Ask Yourself When Making Big Decisions

Questions which will lead to you find the facts, gain perspective, and consider entropy

Darren Matthews
Feb 24 · 5 min read

Why did I get my big decision wrong?

Thirty years on from that decision and I still live with regret.

My big decision errors

As I look back, I can see the following errors.

  • The only thought in my mind was now. There was consideration of the long game, of my career and life ahead. Consequently, I had no perspective on the upsides of moving to the top set. There was no thought about how I might feel about this decision in the future.
  • I didn’t consider the negatives of not moving. I had little thought on the risk of doing nothing. All I could see were the upsides of staying in the lower set.

3 questions for big decisions

What I needed were three questions, which when we ask them, will question our assumptions, challenge our biases, and check our emotions.

  1. How will I feel about this decision in six months or six years?
  2. What is the risk if I do nothing?

Facts

Every decision comes with a myriad of information surrounding it. Facts are the principles of truth on which you can build your decision. Assumptions are not facts, therefore, they are assumed truths and left unchallenged, they will ruin your decision. Asking why and how questions will give you a first principles view of the fundamental truths in your situation.

Perspective

Perspective is a superpower when making big decisions. It’s like superman’s ability to fly, it changes everything, separating him from the rest of us. Perspective enables you to see a different view of your options. When you’re faced with a big decision, losing perspective is the last thing you want, but often the first thing that happens.

Entropy

We think doing nothing risks nothing. This is not a fundamental truth. Seven billion people let alone countless organisms, and the forces of nature make this world what it is. We feel their impact through chance, through serendipity, and if we do nothing, entropy. The fact is, all these elements are beyond our control, and although you’ll never irradicate them when you do something, you’re potentially distancing yourself from their influence.

Concluding thoughts on making big decisions

At the age of fourteen, the concepts of fact, perspective, and entropy weren’t in my mind. But they should have been. Making better decisions should be a life goal. Making our dreams or ambitions a reality comes down to the quality of our choices.

  1. How will I feel about this decision in six months or six years?
  2. What is the risk if I do nothing?

Make Better Decisions

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The Resolve Blog

Making Decisions the Right Way

Darren Matthews

Written by

I’m curious about decisions, strategy, and how to live my best life. Follow me as I write to figure it out and share some wisdom along the way.

The Resolve Blog

Welcome to the Resolve Blog — Here I write about the dynamics of decision-making and how we can learn to make better decisions.

Darren Matthews

Written by

I’m curious about decisions, strategy, and how to live my best life. Follow me as I write to figure it out and share some wisdom along the way.

The Resolve Blog

Welcome to the Resolve Blog — Here I write about the dynamics of decision-making and how we can learn to make better decisions.

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