Friday 18 October 2013

Dagnammit - mumma's gonna get s**t done!

But ARE these Darth's favourite? Damn it!

One of my biggest gripes with life is that there's never enough time to do all the things I want (and need) to do. On top of being a mum, running the household and working from home; I'm always juggling a bunch of different projects, so it frustrates the hell out of me that I don't have more time. I was thinking about that this week and trying to work out how I could sneak more time into my life when the answer hit me - be more decisive.

I recently worked out I spend at least 14 minutes each week deciding what to cook for dinner (that's only for my husband and I, not what the kids eat), and that's just the tip of the iceberg. For some reason I'm pretty good at making big, important decisions quickly - but when it comes to insignificant, minor stuff? I'm a class-A shocker.

I'm one of those annoying people in restaurants who always makes the waiter come to me last because I need more time in case I order the wrong thing and have food envy. I can also easily spend at least 10 minutes weighing up the pros and cons of one washing detergent over another; I always spend ages deciding what to wear every time I go out somewhere other than the shops or kindy, and sometimes I even spend a good 5 minutes deciding what to write on one measly Facebook comment.

Get a grip! Imagine if I just cut the crap and made faster decisions on these unimportant things? I'd have so much more time!

Excited by my new idea for stealing minutes and hours, I hit the google machine this week to find out the best ways I could put my new decisive plan into action.

There was, of course, an abundance of advice out there, with most of it geared around people who aren't naturally confident and never take action on life-changing decisions. This isn't me - as mentioned before I'm pretty good at putting my mind to things and making stuff happen, but annoyingly, I completely suck at all the tiny bullshang.

The good thing about small decisions is that they're usually not significant. Even so though, I don't want to be rash. I want to make quick decisions that are still relatively smart. The info I found often applies to both small and huge decisions, but the nuggets I took away with me are focused purely on how I can pick up the pace on all the small stuff, which I'll now be attempting to incorporate into my busy life.

So here are my compiled top tips and goals for making quick decisions:

Be organised and plan ahead
A know a guy who grew up with the same weekly dinner menu his entire childhood. Monday was spaghetti, Tuesday was steak and veg... you get the idea. Sounds mental, but man I bet his mum had some serious spare time up her sneaky sleeves. I did do a meal planner for a while but it dropped off for some reason, so it's time to bring it back. Don't think I can do a set weekly menu for life though, I'll stick to planning each week out on the Sunday night prior. Takes 5 minutes and saves so much time in deciding what to cook, cuts down on trips to the shops, saves money and reduces food waste. Booyah! I'm sure there are a heap of other things I can get more organised about too, like saving online grocery lists instead of doing new ones from scratch each time, and deciding what to wear to an important function in advance.

Don't sweat the small stuff
I tend to way overthink small decisions when there is absolutely no need to. Ridiculous. Apparently this is a syndrome of being afraid of making the wrong decision. Will my life be ruined if I choose Chinese over Indian takeaway and it ends up not being what I actually felt like? YES! Well, no actually. I don't even want to think about the amount of time I've deliberated over what to order in. Mental. Most decisions for small things are a fleeting moment and gone so quickly they're forgotten in no time at all. So why take so long to make that choice? No more!

Forget perfection and love my choice
No one can make the right decision every time. Well, at least quickly anyway. So I need to forget about striving for perfection (especially as these decisions are so minor), and just get on with it. And when the decision is made, I need to accept it and enjoy it. No regrets or lamenting - wastes too much time! 

Chop chop - put a deadline on small decisions
Don't allow myself to mull over or dwell on small decisions, just decide already and move on! If I need to, I should give myself a very short deadline. i.e. menu selection - max 5 minutes! Because small decisions should not be put off, they should be made NOW.

Limit my choices
Last year Barack Obama announced he was only going to wear blue and grey suits from then on so he could focus his "decision-making energy" on more important stuff. Smart move. What choices could I cut down for myself? De-cluttering my wardrobe and kitchen pantry would be a start; deciding on the brand of toilet paper we're always going to use, and reducing my pile of unused lipsticks and glosses to one or two would also be good. I'm sure there are a zillion more things if I put my mind to it.

Go with my gut
If I pulled out the black dress first, chances are I'm going to come back to it again after I've been through 20 other outfits, because I initially picked it for a reason. Instinct is almost always right so I shouldn't ignore it.

Trust experience
If I've faced a small decision before, I should recall what I did last time. Did it work? Was it right? If so, then no brainer. Stick with what I know and let history repeat. And if it's a decision for something I haven't experienced, like choosing a new hairdresser, I shouldn't go blind but instead ask a friend who might know a good place nearby. I actually did this recently - massive time saver.

Live in the present
Never lose sight of being present and living in the moment. If I'm sitting at a restaurant huddled over a menu for half an hour, I've missed out on some great conversation with friends. And for what? The prospect of the perfect meal choice? Time is money, and it's also life. I don't want to waste either.

My decision to be more decisive is purely driven by a desire for more time, however making fast, intelligent decisions is definitely a good habit to get into. For starters, in a work capacity decisive people are more respected and followed, leading to faster career progression and a more enjoyable working situation geared around the decision maker. Basically, being decisive can make sure you get what you want out of life and in my case, get more shit done. Amen to that.
Do you sweat the small stuff? What tips do you have for being more decisive?

photo credit: coleypauline via photopin cc



1 comment:

  1. As posted on Facebook "Am I allowed to tell everyone how long it took you to choose the picture...haha My advice is be like Yorkshire folk - find summat yer like an stick with it for the rest of your life - Lasagna peas and carrotts please :)"


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