What should I eat for breakfast? Coffee or tea? Red shirt or blue shirt? Do I take the stairs or the elevator?
We’ve made dozens of decisions before we even sit down at our desks every morning. In fact, some studies estimate we make as many as 35,000 decisions each day. And most were so easy, you probably didn’t really consider them.
But what about the big decisions — the ones you agonize over? There’s a way to make the decision-making process simple in these cases too. But first, let’s discuss why people have trouble making decisions in the first place.
What Gets In the Way of Stress-Free Decision-Making?
Too many decisions can lead to the following problems for leaders and individuals faced with making a decision:
1. Decision Fatigue
Decision fatigue gets in the way of great decisions when someone is tasked with making multiple decisions, one right after the other. This is especially prevalent for leaders, considering that for many, every day is one long decision-making session.
Studies show that your decisions get worse and worse after a long period of continuous decision-making. Each decision wears down your will-power and critical thinking skills.
2. Analysis Paralysis
Analysis paralysis occurs when you spend too much time spinning your wheels on the same problem — maybe as a result of decision fatigue.
You’ve probably heard of this one before. People spend so much time and mental energy analyzing a decision that no decision is ever made. No action is ever taken. Studies have shown that overthinking problems lowers performance on mentally demanding tasks, kills creativity, and lowers your willpower.
Decision-Making With The GROW® Model
Unfortunately, decisions (big or small) aren’t going away, but you can make them easier. The key is to create a flexible decision-making framework — a way to solve problems and make decisions easily, over and over again, that translates in any scenario or process.
The GROW Model is a way to organize your thinking to get the best (and fastest) outcome when faced with making a difficult decision. The acronym ‘GROW’ stands for the four stages of decision making:
“The Way Forward makes the decision process something tangible and actionable,” says Alan Fine, co-creator of the GROW Model, “where it becomes very clear to the person making the decision what should happen next. In the absence of motivating clarity, people simply don’t take action.”
The GROW decision-making model is founded on the deceptively simple insight that breakthrough performance usually comes not from acquiring additional knowledge but from removing distractions so decision-makers can act on what they already know.
Good decisions lead to effective actions, which lead to productive results. Fine calls this phenomenon “decision velocity,” the speed and accuracy of decisions that drive individual and organizational performance.
By using a framework like the GROW Model, decision-making — even for tough, complex, and important decisions — becomes a flexible, replicable process instead of an arduous task. You’ll make decisions faster and with less mental energy, leaving you free from decision fatigue and analysis paralysis so you can focus on all the other things that matter too.
Make an Easy Decision: Choose GROW
No decision-making model will make the tough decisions for you, but you don’t have to stumble around in the dark. As one client in a recent InsideOut Development workshop explained: “It takes time to GROW, but it takes more time not to.”
Interested in experiencing the GROW Model for yourself? Contact us today to set up a call with a coaching specialist.