Decisions, decisions, decisions! What to do next, how to do it, when to do it, where to do it? These questions could apply to any decision-making process but for sake of relevance I will consider the prospect of a new career.
At some point in time most of us will have the need or are forced to think about a change in role or a new direction. This is a massive undertaking, one that will affect your life considerably so how do you go about making the right decision?
Who to ask?
I think most of us would ask our friends for their opinion on our idea/s. Usually we would only ask those we trust who have useful insight into our lives and may be well positioned to point out things we need to consider – perhaps they have done the same job in the past or currently. Obviously, a discussion with a partner comes under this, since the decision will likely affect them the most (after you!)
Possibly information from newspaper and magazine articles can be also gained – from reading of those who have made their own career choices to researching articles on potential companies to join.
The Internet knows all!
Then most likely the resource of the internet will be turned to, and good old social media. But while using the internet to research further can be insightful, I would temper referring to social media with a warning. With so many opinions and comments on social media, from Facebook to LinkedIn and those in between, you can quickly be swamped with an information overload. One person likes this company, another doesn’t, everyone likes a comment to “Go for it, YOLO” while others appreciate a comment to “Take your time, life is a marathon not a sprint.” Pretty soon your head can be spinning with conflicting ideas of what to do next and as a result you may even start to feel disillusioned and less confident. Add to this the fact that the social media funnel tends to throw things at you with bias on what you already know, like and interact with, so in actual fact you may not be getting a fair and balanced perspective.
Pull the plug…
My advice for when you need to make a big decision is to withdraw from social media for a period. Give yourself the space to make your own mind up and listen to your gut instinct, without it being drowned out by the noise of Social Media influences. Talk to your trusted friends and family and by all means research companies or people with similar roles. This allows your thought making processes to work at their own pace with trusted information. You don’t need inspirational quotes to be inspired, and you don’t need to see setup photos of others “living their best life” to decide how you need to live your own. You have the ability to make the right decision if you just give yourself the space to do so.
This is something I have done in the past when considering my career and I found it really helped. By unplugging from the SM crowd I was able to focus on what I wanted rather than what everyone else seems to think is a good idea. I didn’t need to read feeds from “professionals” all trying to tell me how to balance this, or focus on that, I simply was able to think.
Hang on…Isn’t this a contradiction?
Of course, the irony here is that I’m now giving advice as another media contributor, which contradicts the essence of my content! If you’ve got this far in reading you may already be thinking that! But hopefully, contradiction aside, my view remains valid. Less really can lead to more, be careful of where you get your advice and information from when making life altering decisions – the wrong source of advice can be damaging and as such, too much advice can be worse than none at all.