You’re sweating one of the biggest decisions of your life—for the sixth
time this week. Your pulse races as you ponder the same three options
again and again. Each choice seems equally logical; each choice carries
equal potential for regret. You become frozen and feel anxious to make a decision.
We’re faced with countless decisions every day—some easy, some tough. And when
the decision making gets tough, we often become confused, second-guess ourselves
or simply procrastinate, hoping time or someone else will make the decision for us.
There is a better—dare I say quick and easy—way to make decisions. Any decision that concerns your career, a relationship, personal life or even your spiritual
journey can be made quickly and easily. But first you have to understand and, to
some extent, undo how you’ve been using three different body parts to make
decisions: your head, your heart and your gut.
Bob is a successful speaker with an enviable number of sales training contracts
from a handful of loyal clients. He was flattered when one client, Sue, asked him
to keynote at her company’s annual meeting in the Bahamas. The catch? Sue
wanted Bob to “tweak” his sales talk for a general audience and call it “How to
Sell Yourself and Increase Credibility Inside the Organization.” Bob hesitated.
He reminded Sue that his best work has always been with sales teams. But Sue
wouldn’t hear of it and told Bob he would be the perfect choice because he knows
sales and her company so well. Sue then sweetened the deal with a
companion airline ticket and hotel room for the weekend.
Uh oh. I don’t know. Tweak? Sue’s talking about a whole different topic;
not mine. Not my audience, either . . . but the Bahamas? Keynote at full fee
in paradise? Sue said she’s already talked me up to leadership and told them
what a difference I made with the sales teams. I wouldn’t want to appear
inflexible or overanalyze this. If I say no, Sue will look bad to her boss.
And besides, sales is sales, right? I could do a little research on per-
sonal branding and tell a few more personal stories. That fee more
than covers my time to customize. This could be an opportunity
for more work from other departments, maybe even a whole
new topic that I can market elsewhere . . . what the
heck . . . piece of cake.
“I’ll do it,” Bob said, while trying to quiet the nagging
voice that wouldn’t stop chanting “You’ll be sorry.”
And Bob was. Five minutes into his presentation, he
knew he was doomed. The audience alternated between
squinty-eyed puzzlement and deer-in-the-headlight stares.
He watched as a vice president motioned Sue to follow him
out of the meeting room. “Egad, what are they saying about
me now?” Bob swore he would never take another booking
that he knew was not the right fit, no matter what. “Told you so,”
the little voice said.