Think before you act
You know the saying, “You can’t judge a book by its cover”?
Well, most of the time, we do.
Actually, it’s safe to say that some of us always do — It’s human nature. Sometimes, we just can’t help it.
For example, you fall in love with an apartment that you immediately end up buying, only to later find out that it has plumbing issues, the floorboards are crooked, and the bathroom has mold.
You probably should have done a bit more research before signing the paperwork, right?
But, you were so blinded by your obsession with the great location, the floor plan layout, and the fact that the building has an elevator with a doorman.
It’s hard to think about the negatives when all you see are the positives.
Now, I’m not encouraging anyone to be pessimistic. I’m suggesting that maybe we should be a little more careful with the decisions that we make in our lives as we get older.
It was much easier when we were kids.
We had the freedom to make Reckless Decisions because reckless decisions were all we had. The consequences weren’t as dire because we lacked the accountability and responsibility that our parents typically took on.
And the worst thing that could happen to you if you misbehaved is your parents take away your toys and you’re left to sulk in silence — How terrible.
As we get older, the consequences that we receive from outside factors could change the course of our lives forever.
I recently read a Medium article that my sister shared with me called, “I have 46 Thanksgiving dinners left with my family. After that, I’ll be Dead” and it really dawned on me about how little time we have left on this earth.
The article suggested that we really start appreciating the people in our lives and the time we spend with our family, to stop worrying about the bullshit, and to be present in the memories that we are making.
As we get older, the more important decisions will come down to,
“Should I switch job industries?”
“Am I with the right person?
“Should see my family for Thanksgiving or just skip out?”
These are the decisions that could have the biggest impact.
So, I encourage you to take a few minutes to step back and really think about the decisions that matter because some decisions can’t be made undone.
At the moment, it could seem like so minuscule, but these are the decisions that could breed the largest consequences. We need to ask ourselves this —
How will this affect me and the people around me in the long run?
Sometimes, certain choices seem more appealing at the time, but as you get older, you can’t always ‘judge a book by its cover”.
You have to weigh your options. You have to make the good judgement calls; the decisions that will serve the greatest meaning.
I’m not discouraging anyone from taking risks or fulfilling their dreams. That’s not what I’m writing about at all. I’m just encouraging you to really think before you act.
It’s true that we are more cautious as we get older but, sometimes we have to be.
When we were kids, we could run as fast as we could without the fear of falling or getting hurt. Now, falling or getting hurt is something that we try to avoid.
There’s nothing wrong with falling or failing — That will happen. That’s life.
However, we are in control of the decisions that we make.
We just need to think first we make them.
Why We Need to Evaluate the Weight of Our Decisions was originally published in The Ascent on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.