Figuring out what you want can be quite the challenge sometimes. If you often feel like you can’t ever make up your mind about things that you want, then you should know that you are not alone. A lot of people spend the better part of their lives not knowing what they want. And not knowing how to decide what you want can leave you feeling frustrated and confused about what move to make next.
The good news is that half the time, you know what you want.
It is just that you may have to become self-aware to realize it.
You may even know what it is but you are just scared to make the big decision.
In this article, tips on how to decide what you want will be discussed.
These tips are simple and if you follow them the way you should, they should help you achieve clarity.
But before these tips will be discussed, let’s look at some of the reasons you can’t seem to decide what you want.
Why Do You Have a Hard Time Deciding What You Want – How to Decide What You Want
Not being able to decide what you want can result in several negative feelings and emotions.
It is an exhausting experience that often leaves people feeling distraught, confused, and discouraged.
When you think about it, your inability to decide what you want may seem like your fault.
But the truth is, it isn’t.
Several things may affect your ability to make a choice for yourself.
And the first step you have to take if you want to learn how to decide what you want is finding out these reasons.
Once you know the reasons you are always so indecisive about what you want, you can then work towards overcoming them.
Therefore, the following are some of the reasons you do not know how to decide what you want.
You Don’t Know Yourself
A lot of people can’t decide what they want because they do not even know themselves.
It is like trying to get a personal gift for someone you hardly know.
It’ll be confusing and mentally exhausting because you have no idea what this person would appreciate and what they will downright hate.
When you do not know yourself, you will struggle with figuring out things about yourself.
You may think you know yourself, but sometimes, your thoughts about yourself are merely other people’s perceptions of you.
Perhaps while growing up, you were always told how reserved you are.
So, you typically grow up thinking you are a reserved person.
You do not even consider reaching that point of self-awareness where you can know who you really are for sure.
Have you ever asked yourself “who am I?”.
Do you know yourself? What are the things you love? Do you know the things that make you happy, the things that motivate you, or inspire you?
If you are asked to speak about yourself, will you know what to say?
The truth is, if you do not understand yourself, you will never have clarity about what you want.
You Have Not Overcome Your Fears – How to Decide What You Want
Fear is another common reason many people have a hard time deciding what they want.
Fear in this context refers to anything holding you back from making a decision.
For instance, your fear may be leaving your comfort zone.
If this is the case with you, you most likely think that things have to be done in a “right” and specific way.
So, you are mostly indecisive, looking for the best way to go about it.
If you are not sure about the outcome of something, you won’t even start it.
Several “what ifs” clouds your mind whenever you have to do something new.
Most times, you have great ideas about what you want.
But fear of the outcome won’t let you explore them.
This may make you keep your ideas in your head without ever doing anything about them.
Sometimes, you may even know the steps you can take to achieve what you want.
But you never let yourself take those steps.
And you may find yourself wondering why you won’t just let yourself work towards what you want.
Past experience is one of the major reasons most people get scared to try something new.
Maybe you had failed at something and ever since then, you always get scared whenever you have to do something new.
But you allowing fear to take the upper hand will leave you feeling dissatisfied in almost all areas of your life.
You Are Limiting Yourself – How to Decide What You Want
Your inability to decide what you want may be because you are yet to accept your potential.
You may be limiting yourself with your thoughts.
To you, you most likely are not good enough to do this or that.
When you do not believe in your skills and abilities, you may think you do not have what it takes to reach your goals.
So, you don’t make any efforts to even make the right decisions for yourself.
Your self-doubt may keep taunting you until you start to believe all the things you think about yourself.
Soon, you won’t be confident in yourself enough to make decisions about what you want.
There Are Too Many Options – How to Decide What You Want
When the opportunities and options available to you are too much, it’s easy to get confused.
Making a decision when the options are many has never been an easy task.
Sometimes, you may get so confused that what people want of you may start looking like what you want.
But when you know yourself, you will still be capable of knowing what you want despite all the noise and distractions.
Tips on How to Decide What You Want
Clarity is what you need to be able to decide what you want.
But how do you get it?
Hopefully, these tips will help you get the clarity you need to be able to decide what you want.
1. Become Self-Aware
First and foremost, you need to improve your self-awareness.
You have to sit with yourself and understand yourself.
When you do, it will be easier to use the subsequent tips to decide what you want.
2. Know What You Do Not Want
Most people spend a lot of time trying to figure out what they want.
But it’s a lot easier to know what you do not want.
When you know what you do not want, you will streamline the options available to you.
This way, it will be a lot easier to decide on what you want.
The following are some of the ways you can decide on what you do not want.
Know The Things That Dissatisfies You
When you identify the areas of your life or business that you are not happy about, you can then come up with plans to fix those things.
You most likely already know the things that dissatisfy you.
So, it should not be difficult for you to list them out.
Now, think of how to fix the things you have written down.
Just making a list of things that dissatisfies may help you know what you want.
But you also need to come up with strategies on how you can fix them.
This is how you get to make your decision.
Let Go of “Shoulds” – How to Know What You Want
Everyone has things they think they should do.
But these things are sometimes things people expect of you and not what you want.
For instance, you think “I should get married”, but you know you don’t want to, at least not yet.
But because your family keeps hinting about it at family gatherings, you feel you should just get it done already.
However, when you let your “shoulds” cloud your mind, you become blind to the things you actually want.
Therefore, you need to let go of “shoulds” and concentrate on your wants.
If you are not self-aware, you may find it difficult to differentiate these two things.
So, try to understand yourself.
Sit with yourself and ask some important questions and make sure you answer them.
Your “shoulds” are those things you are not passionate about but feel compelled to do because of external pressure.
3. Let Go of Your Fears
You may know what you want for yourself but because you are scared, you can’t choose these things.
But holding yourself back because of fear is unfair to you.
Because, sometimes, your fears may even be irrational and abstract.
Therefore, to decide what you want, you need to let go of your fears.
Take a piece of paper and write down things you would do if you were not so afraid.
Those are the things that you want.
Now, all you have to do is overcome your fears so that you can finally decide on doing those things.
4. Figure Out Your Values – How to Decide What You Want
Figuring out your values can help you decide on what you want.
List out those things that you consider important; these values may be concrete things or abstract ideas.
You can figure out your values by asking yourself some important questions.
What are the most fulfilling times in your life? Who are your role models and what are the qualities you admire and respect in them? Why do you admire these qualities? What are you most passionate about?
Evaluate your answers to these questions.
See if there’s a particular theme or belief in your answers.
When you know your values, you will be able to make decisions that will match those values.
This will help you live a happier and more satisfying life.
5. Know That Your Limitations Are Imposed on You by You– How to Decide What You Want
If you want to go beyond your limitations, you need to change your mindset and push yourself both mentally and physically.
Doing these things may be difficult, but they are doable.
It’s just that the way limitations work is that they make you feel like you can never go beyond them.
But the truth is that whatever limitation you think you have is self-imposed.
And you need to realize this.
Once you know that you are the one telling yourself that you can’t, you can then develop a new mindset; the “I can” mindset.
This mindset will make you question your limitations and work towards overcoming them.
When you can overcome your limitations and fears, you will become more confident in your choices.
You would know the things you want and you won’t let self-doubt stop you from deciding to pursue them.
6. Do Not Allow Emotions Cloud Your Judgement – How to Decide What You Want
A lot of people often tend to let emotions and other external factors cloud their judgment when deciding what they want.
But when you make decisions based on your emotions, you won’t make the best choice.
So, when you are angry, sad, overly excited, bad, or any other mode, is not the best time to make a decision on what you want.
Before you decide what you want, make sure you are in a calm and relaxed state.
Your decisions should be based on facts and other information like your values.
7. Always Consider the Consequences
Another thing you need to consider when deciding what you want is the consequences.
Yes, fear should not prevent you from doing what you want.
However, this does not mean that you should throw caution to the wind.
Before you make any decision, ensure you take time to consider the consequences; both long-term and short-term.
Although it is impossible to predict the exact result of your decision, however, you can make estimates; you can always consider the possible results and effects.
Regardless of how much you want something, you should not decide on it if the consequences will be dire or severe.
8. Learn to Reassess Your Decisions
Another thing you need to do is reassess your decisions occasionally.
You may have made a decision on what you wanted years ago and you have been on that path ever since.
And everything may be going well and smoothly.
But this does not mean that is what you still want at every stage of your life.
As you grow, your perspective will change and this may affect you in numerous ways.
What you wanted 3 years ago, may not be what you want now.
This is why you need to learn how to reassess your decisions.
Occasionally revisit your decisions and see if they are things you still want.
Do they fit your current values and goals?
If they do, then continue working with them.
If they do not, then you need to re-evaluate your current values and goals.
See what you want now and come up with steps and strategies that can help you achieve them.
This is the best way to ensure that you are always on the path toward achieving what you want.
9. Do Not Be Scared to Make Mistakes – How to Decide What You Want
Sometimes, you may not be aware that you want something unless you try it out.
Being confused about what you want is a common thing that a lot of people struggle with.
In cases like this, it may be worth giving it a try before you make a final decision.
When you try it out, you can then decide whether or not you want it.
This is why you need to let go of the fear of making mistakes.
So, even when you might make a mistake with something, do not be scared to try them out.
When you aren’t willing to try things out because you may fail or make a mistake, you deprive yourself of the chance of deciding what you want.
You should know that making mistakes and learning often go hand in hand.
If you avoid doing something because you do not want to make a mistake, you may end up feeling anxious about it anytime you think of it.
But if you take the step, even though it may not turn out the way you want, you can rest with the assurance that you at least tried.
10. Implement Your Decision – How to Decide What You Want
It is not enough to just decide on what you want.
You also need to implement your decisions.
After analyzing your values, goals, and every other thing, you need to make a decision and stick by it.
You need to go after those things that you have decided on.
For instance, let’s say you decide to expand your business.
It is not enough to just make this decision.
You need to work towards it.
Make steps, strategies, and other things that will help you achieve your decision.
If you only make decisions without taking steps toward actualizing them, you won’t ever get what you want.
Conclusion on How to Decide What You Want
Knowing what you want is one challenge almost everyone encounters.
And sometimes, you may even know what you want, but you do not know how to decide on it.
This is because certain things like fear and self-doubt might be stopping you from realizing and accepting your full potential.
This is why one of the first things you need to do to decide what you want is to let go of fear.
Your limitations are in your mind and you just need to realize this.
You have to develop the “I can” mentality that will enable you to overcome obstacles and setbacks so that you can go beyond your limitations.
Aside from letting go of fear and self-doubt, you also need to know yourself.
Being self-aware is one of the best ways to figure out what you want for yourself.
If you are not self-aware, you most likely won’t know what you want, let alone make decisions based on your wants.
Finally, make sure you know your core values and goals.
Most of the time, your values and goals are a strong determiner of what you want for yourself.