locked gate

The problem, simply put, is that we cannot choose everything simultaneously. So we live in danger of becoming paralyzed by indecision, terrified that every choice might be the wrong choice. —Elizabeth Gilbert

Lately, I’ve been making myself miserable trying to decide whether to travel  across the country to attend a professional training course. Go or stay? This course or another one? I created lists of ways I could spend the money if I didn’t go. If I did attend, what would I be missing at home?

The truth is I was being held hostage by a fear of opportunity cost. This is the term economists use to describe when we choose one course of action and rule out others. Giving up those other options is the opportunity cost of any decision.

I couldn’t bear the thought of losing any opportunity by making a clear choice. I was an opportunity miser.

Misery = the feeling of being a miser.

Just as money misers hoard their wealth, living as if they were poor even when they are rich, opportunity misers hoard their freedom to choose – and end up becoming prisoners of indecision.

Maybe, like me, you’re feeling miserable as you wrestle with a decision. I’ll share the phrase I found in a book by Cheryl Richardson:  Stop hoarding your life energy. Invest it in living your best life.

Make a choice. There’s no guarantee you’ll make the “right” decision. But when you trade indecision for choice, you’ll either succeed or you’ll learn something.

You may discover, like I did, that action is the best medicine for the anxiety you are feeling.

Do you feel stuck when you try to make a decision?

How much of your life energy is being sucked into the vortex of dithering?