Sunday, 5 May 2013

Decision- Why One Avoids? (Part-1)

The majority of people who fail to accumulate money sufficient for their needs are, generally, easily influenced by the opinions of others.
-Napoleon Hill

Why one is not able to take decisions? Why one feels so tense at the time of making decision? While asking these questions, be aware of the feelings and thoughts rises in the mind. One will find that these feelings and thoughts are having negative connotation and somehow linked to fear; mostly the fear of being ridicule by others than fear of failure.

In my childhood I heard many stories of Akbar and Birbal. In one of them, Akbar challenged his courters to make a stick smaller without touching it by any means, which on his order was fixed in the centre of his court. None could find a solution except Birbal. What he did was fixed another stick bigger than the stick fixed by Akbar beside it. The moral of the story opened the door to a new way of thinking for me that one could do destructive things also in constructive manner. Here, the motivating source is not fear but gratification.

In doing some destructive thing the fear of criticism is very high as compared to constructive things. Let me give an example, if one is asked to edit an article he would feel fear because he has to find faults which is in someway is destructive. On the other hand if the same person is asked to write a new one he would feel relaxed or might feel delighted. This is because one is comfortable in taking responsibility for oneself than for others. The factor for this way of thinking is the fear of criticism by others.

One thing I could tell with utmost responsibility that no one ever is praised by the whole world for taking a particular decision. Jesus was crucified. Socrates was poisoned. Mahatma Gandhi and Abraham Lincoln were shot dead and still there are many more which could be shared.

Lord Rama, according to Hindu mythology, was an ideal person, worshipped as symbol of truth and justice but his decision was also not accepted by all. He decided to accept his wife back after passing chastity test by her but his decision was challenged by a washerman. So it is unwise to expect full acceptance (for whatsoever may be the cause). The famous lyricist of Indian Cinema, Anand Bakshi, in his evergreen song for the movie Amar Prem wrote "don’t bother for other's comment; it’s their duty to say".

The other prominent interruption in arriving decision is fear of failure. At this point, I must tell that every success story is also a story of great failure. History is full of examples in support. The most quoted one is the example of KFC. Colonel Sanders at the age of 65 started to sell some specially prepared chicken dish but outright rejected at 99 doors. He found his first customer at 100th door. Thomas Alva Edison while struggling to find the correct metal for bulb filament tested 9,999 metals but failed. Finally, in his 10,000th attempt, he succeeded and found tungsten. It is well said by Tom Watson Sr. that if one wants success, he must double the rate of his failures.

I heard a story of a man who had a habit of avoiding decision and always rested decisions on fate. One day he had to cross a river and only one boat was available. He felt happy because he didn't had to choose; it was the decision of fate. He hired the boat. While rowing in mid of river, suddenly, the boatman lost control and the boat started to sink. He was a firm devotee of Lord Mahavir and hence started shouting "Save me Mahavir Save me! It wasn't my decision. I had no option. I am not responsible for it. You have to save me". Finally, a hand appeared from sky and took him out of the sinking boat. He felt relieved but next he heard a voice asking whether he sought for Lord Mahavir, disciple of Lord Rama or Lord Mahavir, the Tirthankar of Jain. One cannot escape a decision but can only prolong.   

Decisiveness is a characteristic of high-performing men and women. Almost any decision is better than no decision at all.
-Brian Tracy


  1. inspiring article.. thanks for sharing the awesome update. keep sharing

  2. Good one. Nice message.
    Even I had written a poem on decisions & had shared the same lesson- Not taking a decision is also a decision :P

    1. Thanks Anita for stopping by. Could you care to share your poem's URL?

  3. Very good post Ravish, sometimes people also think that a person is taking too much time to take decisions, but actually what happens that the person decides something, but then hesitate to share their decision with the world. It can have many other reasons for this hesitation, but then this delay in deciding decisions might fall them into the category of the same....

  4. Thanks Alok for appreciating the post. Yes but behind hesitation, there's always a fear.