Plan to get fear done

The problem: Worries are escorting your daily life.
Often, when decisions have to be made and when things have to be done time is lost while "fearing around". If you look at your daily life there can be plenty of little fears that accompany plenty little things that you are doing or thinking of.

The reason: Missing plan how to deal with new issues.
Looking into detail there are multiple reasons for the problem: Missing alignment, missing priorities, missing goals, missing knowledge, open decisions, sticking to things that passed away, Missing acceptance.

The solution: Have a plan to get things done and close the file.
When new issues - new problems, new goals, new phases of life - show up then you should deal with them correctly in order to solve them. Otherwise they will remain open somehow (even if "only" in the hidden basement of your brain). The final intention is to "close the file" - to make a checkmark the completed task or issue.

Although the issues might differ a lot in detail what they have in common is that they are open issues - they are consuming "brain force" and hence blocking you. As for recurring things you should have a procedure, here is a proposal:
  1. Become aware.
    Other than with emails where it can be clearly defined when there is a new item in your inbox for your personal mind it is not so obvious. Get sensitive for the blocking status - get a feeling for your mental "inbox". So that you can be conscious of new issues that touched ground of your mind and keep staying there. Look at yourself, step back and name the issue - definition is an important thing. Then become also aware of the related fears that come up when you think about the open issue.
  2. Get the facts.
    When you know your problem you can examine the facts that come along with your problem. Stick to clear facts at this stage because you are currently making experience. It is important not to make unproven assumptions at this stage. Facts can be related to the current effects you are experiencing as well as to the reasons or the environment you are in.
  3. Set goals and priorities or remind on them (if there have been set already priorities for such a type of issue).
    Goals and priorities are two different things that shouldn't be mixed: A goal mostly implies or comes along with the definition of an outcome and can be that you arrive from point A to point B but the solution can be very different depending on your priorities which can be for instance to arrive as soon as possible, consume less energy, pay less, have opportunity to know new people and so on. Depending on the priorities the variety of solutions is narrowed which later makes decision easier.
  4. Do research.
    Gather knowledge about the issue, about the effects, side effects, reasons and possible "cures". Separate clear and proven facts/rules (during practical use) from theoretical knowledge and from theories (unproven theoretical knowledge). And put aside your hopes and desires. Only with a clear separation of the knowledge item according to it's "strength" good decisions are possible. The research part is often the one that cannot be satisfied completely - especially when issues are urgent or not expected to have strong impacts. The time invested into the research phase should be adequate to the size and impact of your issue.
  5. Evaluate possible solutions.
    Find existing/known solutions or invent new solutions. This is the creative part. Then summarize the expected effects, side effects, benefits and drawbacks of the most applicable solutions. Think of a worst case scenario also.
  6. Review.
    Depending on the sum of facts, goals, priorities, results of research and evaluations it might be necessary to "go back to the start" or at least some steps back. Depending on what turned out in the previous steps it might be necessary to go back to point 3 - Set goals and priorities. Depending on urgency and impact the review phase might be skipped.
  7. Choose your way.
    Make your decision, choose the best fitting solution for your issue. It can also be a set of actions and strategies that can lead to solution of your issue.
  8. Accept the consequences.
    You have chosen your way and actions from best knowledge in an efficient way. All the consequences give you new experience and it is not worth crying if something happened in a different way as you expected. Remember that there is no wrong or correct decision - just actions and effects and as you have chosen your way the consequences are just bringing you the results of what you have decided to do in your life. So, why worry?
Related posts: Crappy guesswork, The fear, Something more important, Primary motivator.

No comments: