4 Steps to Make You A Better Decision Maker

Long back, we as a family took the membership of the British Council Library. 

Since then, we visit at least once every two months. My children associate Library with me-time, reading and chaat. 

Yes, chaat, the very famous roadside Indian snack!

There is a famous chaat wala right outside the library who we don’t miss ever on the way back. 

Truth be told, more than the library, it is the chaat wala that we crave for!  It has become a ritual for us. 

This Saturday, I was ordering Chaat, as my family was waiting. Sohana, my six year old daughter noticed a man standing nearby smoking a cigarette.

There is a panwadi right opposite the Chaat wala. Panwadi, the betel seller who sells cigarettes as well. 

Sohana asked me a simple question: Everyone knows smoking is injurious to health, it even causes cancer, but still people decide to smoke. Why’s that Papa?

Why do people decide to smoke when it’s not good for their own selves. 

Good question, I said. 

She continued to look at me. The look on her face told me she was looking for an answer better than that. 

So, I added, Yes, they shouldn’t! 

But why do they decide to smoke?, she reiterated.

I couldn’t think anything better, and said, perhaps because they’re fools. 

She said, He doesn’t look like one though Papa!

I looked at this smoker who I noticed was a well built man with decent looks.

Ok, pass!, I said, giving her a clap at her hand with mine, as if she had asked me a new riddle she had learnt at school to which I didn’t know the answer. 

She was not impressed. And to be honest, neither was I! 

Okay, I said and walked straight to this guy, and asked, “Hi, my daughter and I’m doing a little survey. Would you like to participate?

He gave me a nod. 

I repeated Sohana’s question, “Why did you decide to smoke when it’s not good for your own self?
He looked at me puzzled, then smiled and whispered in my ear, “To be honest, I started smoking because my Dad told me I should not smoke!

I smiled and told that to Sohana later. She also laughed. But perhaps there was some truth in his statement. 

We are mostly given instructions about life – Do this, Don’t do that. That’s it. 

But has anyone ever taught you how to make decisions in your life? 

Think of your own life. Haven’t you made decisions to prove something to someone or even to your own self?

Why? 

Well, because you don’t know any better. We still make decisions, and since morning, you would have made at least a 100 decisions. 

But unfortunately, we are doing so without having any process around it. And then, we complain that things are not going right for us -bad grades, career crisis, divorces and so on. 

Well, the root cause is the lack of an understanding of decision making process. 
And that’s exactly what I am here to fill today with this DISC.

Be Deliberate. Decide to decide! Otherwise, someone else will decide for you. 

Remember the Ideal.me: Who I really want to be? Then ask, “Will this decision take me few steps closer to the ideal.me or few steps away from it?

Someone once told me the definition of Hell:

Hell is when on your last day in this world, the person you have become meets the person you could have become! Click To Tweet

Next, start making Small decisions today. They will help you can make BIG decisions tomorrow!

  • What to wear today for work?
  • What will I do this weekend?
  • Will I say Yes, No or May be to the 1000 proposals my friends will be coming up with? 

“Everything you’re doing right now is preparing you for a time that is yet to come.” – Jeff Goins. 

Compare Short term v/s long term gains

Well, that solves the why people smoke puzzle. They smoke for getting instant pleasure, that is short term happiness even though in the long term, it will destroy them. 

And why only smoking, there are many other examples like abusing, bullying, cheating and drinking. They all give you a kick in the short term, but in the long term they will destroy you. Next time you feel the urge, use this table and then make a decision: 

Who do you really want to become? Your Ideal.me.

Well, there’s no guarantee of success, but you can always improve your odds.

And becoming a better decision maker using this DISC will give you the best chance possible.                                                                                                                                                                               


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Do What You Say!

Say what you do

Do what you say

A harmonious life

isn’t too far away

 

“Don’t play on the phone

Don’t shout, don’t fight!”,

said I, while talking on the phone

and was I polite?

 

Kids are either on the tab

or fighting or crying..

Boss is bad, ..no one understands.

…every moment, I’m dying!

 

Either they’re all insane,

or may be..,

just may be,

I’m doing something ‘not right’?

 

I thought all day,

..even sat to pray.

When I slept,

“He” showed me the way,

 

“Say what you do

Do what you say

A harmonious life

isn’t too far away”

 

All this while,

I was looking outside.

Practicing this mantra,

brought ‘peace’ to my life.

 

Just say what you do

Do what you say

A harmonious life

really isn’t too far away!


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Will I Die Undone?

I believe we’re here for a reason,

but I’m scared each day of every season,

for clock is ticking fast, the baby we held is now our teenage son! 

what if I can’t find it (the reason)

and die undone?

 

I am a writer, no a manager, crap… a painter, husband, papa and son,

all combined into one

but from all of the above, the sole reason for my existence can be none!

what if I can’t find it (the reason)

and die undone?

 

I seek God for an answer

… isn’t seeking God itself the reason?

I meditate: read Gita, Quran, Guru Granth and Bible

I was so close to the answer

but didn’t realize when it took me away from my dear ones

 

I was, after all, praying and reading from winter to fall

paying little attention to anything else

until my little two year old doll 

was hurt on her face.. so badly, hit with a ball

that’s when I realized

 

I needed to come back to life, …my life.

and play the roles, all of them, even if I master none

I am a writer, a manager, a painter, husband, papa and son

and if I do justice to each of these one

There is no way I will die undone

 

I still believe we’re here for a reason,

and I’m living each day of every season,

playing all my roles well and having fun!

Alas! I found it,

I will not die undone!

Why You Need to Bring Your Office Home!

“What should be the frequency of this meeting?”

“How about once every six months?”

“No, that’s too less, we do need it at least once in three months.”.

Nothing unusual about that dialogue right?

Not until I tell you that is a conversation between me and my nine year old son, Tanav.

Yes, we do plan and have meetings at home. Just like office. In fact, I just finished a meeting with Tanav, my son (see below an earlier recording)

Office meetings are generally considered a waste of time, too lo..ng and boring.  But no matter how much we complain about them, if they’re right way – they help in planning, reviewing progress and resolving issues. In acknowledging people for their work. Meetings are, indeed, an essential for any organization…including the home organization

Strike the right chord and get insights that are impossible to get otherwise. You will discover a whole new person in your family member! 

Don't live with strangers in the house all your life and call it a family! Click To Tweet

These meetings can take your relationship with your family on the growth trajectory .

Human mind is complex. It has inhibitions. It doesn’t share easily. Not even with people who are close to us!  Expecting others to open up in a normal setting, is out of question. We have to book a time, a place and tell the participants (in this case our son or daughter or wife), that you need them there!

..And why just meetings? There is quite a lot of good stuff we need to bring home from office! 

Organizations have a set of systems meant to make things happen smoothly and improve. 

But home sweet home? Do we have any systems? If you’re like most people, your answer is a No.

In the absence of any system for family to be cohesive, performing and improving, we just rely on God Almighty to take care of our home affairs. But , God only helps those who help themselves!

“I am putting in all the efforts and time in office to earn and save only for the family.”, you might say. 

Well, thanks but your family needs “you”. Your time. Now. Not later.

If you don’t give the time now, your connection with your folks is broken… forever!

Now, if you tell me: I really don’t have the time.

Okay, then here’s another tip: Go Lean.

Organizations are shouting about going lean: which means reducing waste. But your family organization? You are the CEO. Or co-CEO or whatever of that, no?

So get your act together and go lean. Here’s what I mean:

  • No Phone on Weekends. (basically this means using phone as a plain simple phone, that too if it’s absolutely needed!)
  • No TV on Mondays.
  • No Facebook App on the Smartphone. And yes, No Whatsapp too!
  • No Technology in the Bedroom.

You get the idea. Reduce the wasteful activities. That will make time for useful ones.

Oh God! Today, give me the strength to say 'no' to things I may do only to regret later. Click To Tweet

By the way, yours truly has done all of the above. Of course, one by one though.

When I shared the idea of a No Phone Day on Saturdays, it seemed impossible. Everyone resisted. Initial few weeks were tough. The cries and frustrations were all so visible on everyone’s faces. But soon, good things began to happen.

Tanav, my nine year old son, opened his bookshelf after ages! We have played several board games as a family.  Not so long ago, he was hooked to Clash of Clans. We had no idea how to get him off!

And the best part was yet to come: Tanav, my son, loved the idea so much that he himself proposed to have Sunday’s too as No Phone Days!

A few months have passed, and Tanav has just recently proposed to have Mondays as No TV Days! Can you beat that!

Today is Day 1 of No TV Day. Excitement abound. Tanav is busy cleaning his study table, and Sohana, my 4 year old daughter, my bookshelf.

It’s going well. We haven’t switched on the TV. Not as yet. It’s not easy but we will face this challenge as a family.

..That my friends is Sawhney Family Organization going Lean. When is Your’s? 


If you like this post, then show the love by sharing it with friends and family. The best part of writing a blog is the discussion that follows, so do register your thoughts and views below.