I remember when I was young and as a group of kids we would stand in a little cluster with each of us holding both of our fists out. Then the leader would bop each fist as they sang out…
“One potato, two potatoes, three potatoes, four. Five potatoes, six potatoes, seven potatoes, more. My mother told me to pick the very best one, and you are not it.”
It was a very scientific tool we used to make all decisions.
I probably could have used that little technique the last time I went to buy a new toothbrush. I already had my favorite type and style, but they quit making it. As I stood looking at the options, I realized there were too many; it was overwhelming. How in the world could I be expected to choose only one toothbrush from the 4,542 that faced me.
Some people are very good at making decisions, and some, not so much. I tend to be impulsive and decide quickly based on my gut feeling. It usually - not always though – works out pretty well.
I have a friend who agonizes over decisions. She puts too much pressure on herself to make sure each choice is either perfect or stands the best chance of being that way.
Many years ago I was trying to tell Madi that she needed to do something that she really didn’t want to do. It was probably cleaning her room. She was upset because I told her she had to. Somehow the whole thing morphed into a fairly philosophical discussion where I finally explained to her that she always had a choice. Some choices have worse consequences than others, but she had the choice. It was a total parent thing to say, but that didn’t negate the truth of it.
As adults, we tend to keep our heads down and keep on keeping on. We take what comes our way, and for the most part act as if we don’t have a choice.
Well, it’s true that a lot of things, both good and bad, come at us unrelentingly regardless of whether we want them to or not, but we have a choice in how we react to them. Do we get angry at life and our misfortune or do we find a way to live with it? We can choose to go or to stay, to forgive or allow ourselves to become bitter. There are certainly more consequences with some decisions than with others.
This week I’m going to make an effort to make good decisions. To make conscious decisions: to love, to forgive, to be positive, and hopefully to find the right toothbrush!