The one question I ask myself

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I believe that all human problems stem from two places: fear or desire.

If you’re scared to confront someone then it relates to fear. It could be your fear of upsetting them, your fear of making a situation worse or your fear that the person won’t like you anymore. That’s fear stopping you having a conversation.

A lot of our daily decision making is driven by fear and I suggest that this is neither rational nor useful. I’m going to share something I use when making difficult decisions.

I ask myself just one question. It has worked for me to lead to less fear and definitely better decision making. I’m going to ask you the same question:

“What’s the worst thing that could happen?”

And notice that I asked what thing, not plural things, I don’t want a list of all possible bad things you may ever encounter.

So, what was your answer? Chances are that no matter who you are it’s something to do with loss and death. I don’t consider death a morbid subject, it’s a reality for all and as I read recently it is “the greatest equaliser”.

Now that you’ve established the singular worst thing that could happen, you can use this to lead to less fear and better decision making.

Let’s say you’re at work and someone keeps interrupting you and all they want is a chat. You have to leave on time, have deadlines and could do without the constant chatter. You don’t want to offend your colleague or come across as unapproachable – that is your fear voice talking. Now ask yourself this: If you tell that person that you’d love to talk to them it’s just that you need some uninterrupted time, and suggest to schedule a lunch/coffee together another day to catch up, will the worst thing
happen? No, it won’t. Easy.

Now, I know that there’s a whole list of ‘but this or that’. Ignore it. The worst thing won’t happen and that’s all that matters.

Give it a go for just one decision today and see how you get on. It takes practice and I promise you it’s well worth it for overcoming your fears.

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