Ecclesiastes 11:6 (ESV)
In the morning sow your seed, and at evening withhold not your hand, for you do not know which will prosper, this or that, or whether both alike will be good.
Some estimates state that us humans make about 35,000 decisions every day which equates to about 2,000 decisions every hour if you are one who sleeps around 7 hours a day. Many of these choices may already be habitual, but if a person doesn’t have a sound system for making decisions, the anxiety and worry could neutralize one’s response.
Early in my business career, a mentor taught me his technique of making a decision when one has many viable choices. He was a very successful real estate operator and basically would practice Ecclesiastes 11:6. He would list the top five possible options and then pursue each of them with a full gusto as if that one was the best solution. However, he wouldn’t make a final decision until the very last moment. When he came to the gate of the bridge when a decision had to be made regarding that one choice, he would again evaluate the choice with his other options. Many times, he would say no and keep pursuing the other four options with full intensity. Many times, the options would be 180 degrees opposite of each other. And we would pursue them as if each one was the best solution.
The bottom-line: Eventually the choices would narrow down to one or two strong possibilities. And then we would select one and work it with all the gusto and resources at our disposal. This practice taught me that there was more than one option to choose from and one never knew the outcome from the beginning until many years later.
Life is like that in many ways. Some people feel that there is only one person destined for them to marry. The fact is God has given us an abundance of selections. We can witness that in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve could eat from the thousands of trees except one. God gave them multiple options. But they kept coming back to the one which eventually led to the fall of mankind.
In business, we generally have many options to choose from but because of resource limitations, we select what will do the job. Many of the choices would probably work. Some may cost more than others; others may provide more convenient features. However, whichever one you choose, is the one you learn to make work and to maximize its capabilities within the working environment.
Only hindsight will dictate whether it was a good, better, or best decision at the time. But the fact is, there rarely is “only one” choice. It’s more about you making a choice and executing the plan. Socrates got it right when he quotes that hard work after you make your choice really determines the outcome of your decision. Think about that the next time you think you only have one choice on the matter.
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