The last two weeks, we looked at two of my favorite time management techniques: priority management and boundary management. This week, we look at the next piece of time management: decision making management.

Tip #3: Decision Making Management

This week, I want you to start to become aware of how quickly you get backlogged because you are waiting to make a decision. I started using this technique (very loosely based on David Allen’s book “Getting Things Done”) where I sort my to do list by:
  1. projects (things that require decisions, tasks, thought about what the tasks should be)
  2. short tasks that can be done without thought
  3. decisions that need to be made
  4. things I am waiting on
  5. tasks that can be done in less than 2 min.

When you organize your TO DO list with these categories, you will quickly realize how often you are slowed down because you haven’t made a DECISION about something.

“Are you going to do networking this week or make sales calls?” “Will you work on your signature talk or send a few follow up emails?”
There is no magic formula for decision making. The best you can do is: make a decision, and make it right. You will gain SO much more trust in yourself operating this way than analyzing endlessly and avoiding making decisions (look, anyone who knows me knows I am guilty of this too – but I also know it is very normal. It is the ego’s way of trying to avoid pain). So the best you can do is: see what decisions you have to make, become aware of how much time you spend avoiding or procrastinating them, and then start testing: can I make a decision and make it right? What is possible if I start making decisions faster? How much of my time and my life do I get back? How much more effective do I become if I am willing to shorten my decision making time?
This isn’t about being careless or thoughtless, but there are some decisions – you know the ones I am talking about – you have looked at from all angles, there is no right or wrong answer, no historical precedent that you can easily find, just a choice. Which means you make it, and course correct it if it doesn’t work how you want. And continue to work with aligning your mind with success. Because at the end of the day, no external decision to act is THAT significant. It is really about the mind you take the action with that will create (or not) the results you want. So continue to bring your mind back to success, possibility, abundance and opportunity and the decisions will come much easier and more quickly.

So – what decisions have you been procrastinating? Even small ones? How much time each week would you get back if you made decisions more quickly?