Confident Decision-Making for Entrepreneurs

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Written by Linda Drosdowech

You can become a confident decision-maker who believes in your ability to make and follow through on decisions

  • Get clarity on the old beliefs holding you back, the uncomfortable emotions you’re avoiding feeling, and the actions you’re scared to take. 
  • Increase your productivity, and waste less time in confusion, second-guessing yourself, and self-doubt – oh, and all that time imagining worst-case scenarios. 
  • Lean into your experience, wisdom, and deep inner knowledge, and stop looking to everyone else for the answers

Become a person who makes decisions and follows through on their commitments to get things done even when it’s hard, messy, and imperfect

  1. Create Your Big Vision
  2. Clarify Your Goals
  3. Follow Through on Small Decisions
  4. Have Compassion for Yourself When (Not if) You Fail
  5. Share Your Decision to Be Accountable
  6. Challenge Your Unhelpful Beliefs
  7. Change Your Self Concept & Trust Yourself
  1. CREATE YOUR BIG VISION

To be an effective decision-maker who tackles their day-to-day decisions with clarity and certainty, you need to know what big vision you’re working towards. 

For some of us, that answer is clear: You know exactly the kind of life you’re creating, who you want to be, and how you want to show up to your own life.

For others, the future feels like a vague, nebulous entity that we have no control over, and are at the mercy of what happens to us. 

Get curious about what you want and then trust the vision you’ve been given. 

TO DO

  1. Ask yourself: what do I want?
  2. Then ask yourself: what do I really want? Not what I’ve been told to want or expected to pursue or think I should want. What do I really want?

OUTCOME

When you’re clear (or clearer) on the influence you want to have, the experiences you want to create and the direction you’re heading towards, your day to day decisions become easier to make

2. CLARIFY YOUR GOAL

Now that you know what you want – or at least a stronger sense of the big vision you’re heading towards, you need to understand your motivation or purpose for going after your vision, and then create an actual goal to help you achieve it. 

This is also known as understanding your “why” or knowing what you’re motivated by. 

For example: Sara’s big vision is to create a profitable business that helps women take control of their finances. Her reasons for wanting to achieve this are: financial independence for herself, and financial freedom for other women so they have more choices and options in life than staying in a bad relationship. She decides her goal to get her there is to create an online course that’s easy to understand and accessible. 

TO DO

  1. Journal Prompt: How will my life improve when I create the big vision I have for my life? How will my family’s life improve? My community? The world? 
  2. Once you have your reasons for achieving your big vision, choose one goal to help you get there. I know the temptation to create a whole list of goals, but overcomplicating is the enemy of decision-making
  3. Your brain is starting to freak out! I’ve asked you to make a couple big decisions: What’s your big vision, and what’s a goal to get you there? You may be thinking: if I knew how to make those big decisions, I wouldn’t be taking this class! Just choose for the sake of this class – it can be the “wrong one”. You can go back to indecision later. Clarity can make us feel a bit panicky. We’ll get to that in a bit

OUTCOME

Feeling aligned with your purpose and understanding your motivation for taking steps towards your big vision is the fuel to help you set and achieve your goal

3. FOLLOW THROUGH ON SMALL DECISIONS

Now that you have your big vision, your reasons for pursuing it, and a goal to help you achieve it, it’s time to learn how to follow through on small day-to-day decisions.

You need to create some wins, and start to shift your self -oncept from a person who makes a decision but doesn’t follow through, to a person who confidently does what they say they’re going to do.

Remember: a decision is meaningless unless it is put into action.

This is the point of the process where a lot of people give up: 

  • They procrastinate by doing tasks unrelated to their goal because they don’t know how to get started
  • They feel overwhelmed and becomed paralyzed because they don’t know how to prioritize because all tasks feel important. 
  • They stay stuck in avoidance by getting lost in busywork
  • They ramp up their perfectionism by over planning and over researching. Also known as getting stuck at the whiteboard
  • They set unrealistic expectations and decide on unattainable goals 
  • They make too many decisions at once and go into decision fatigue

TO DO

  1. Organize your goal into small, doable tasks
  2. Make them even smaller
  3. Seriously. The task should take 10 minutes to complete
  4. Then do the task no matter what – even if you feel all shades of discomfort, even if it’s messy and imperfect, even if your brain is creating mind drama and fear – to start building your confidence and trust in yourself

OUTCOME

You organize your goal into bite-sized tasks, then decide to do them no matter how uncomfortable the sensations are

4. HAVE COMPASSION FOR YOURSELF WHEN (Not if) YOU FAIL

You’ve decided on a vision, a purpose, and a goal that’s broken down into small tasks! 

Success! 

Now make room for failure. 

Life is going to get in the way of following through on your decisions: illness, family responsibilities, the oil light coming on in your car on the way home from yoga…

And if it’s not life getting in the way, it will be your brain with all sorts of reasons why you shouldn’t follow through: “I’m tired today” “It’s too hard” “I don’t want to feel embarrassed by bothering that person”. 

You will not follow through. And fail.

And that’s okay. You’re a delectably imperfect human with challenges that will derail you. 

At that moment, the important thing is to have your own back: speak kindly to yourself, check in with your body and ask yourself what you need physically – a rest, a walk, a water? And emotionally – a pep talk, a dose of nature, a good cry? And spiritually – read the tarot cards, meditate for a couple of minutes, ask your higher power for guidance?

TO DO 

  1. Shower yourself with love and compassion when you fail
  2. Evaluate what’s working, why you think it stopped working, and what small tweak you can make to help you recommit to your decision

OUTCOME

You learn to fail and start over; again and again, as you practice self acceptance as a flawed but entirely loveable human being

5. SHARE YOUR DECISION TO BE ACCOUNTABLE

You’re failing forward on your vision, purpose, goals and tasks decisions. Way to go! 

Why not tell someone about your plan?

If we’ve had a lot of false starts in our lives, it can feel intimidating to let others in on our decisions.

We’re afraid they’re thinking: “Here she goes again. Another project that’s doomed to never see the light of day” because deep down that’s what we’re thinking.

We may keep our decisions to ourselves for fear of judgement: “I’ll wait until I’ve achieved the thing so I don’t feel shame if I give up”.

Why not let yourself be vulnerable and be seen in the struggle? Let other people know what you want? It’s a risk, of course, because you may end up disappointing yourself again. 

But then again you may succeed because of the support and encouragement – just make sure you share your decisions with people who truly want you to succeed.

TO DO

  1. Tell someone what you’ve decided to work towards
  2. Unmask and tell the truth of what you want and need

OUTCOME

You have the confidence to fail publicly  

6. CHALLENGE YOUR UNHELPFUL BELIEFS

You’re sharing your journey with an accountability friend or coach while you fail forward on your vision, purpose, goals, and tasks decisions. You’re gaining clarity and momentum!

But old belief systems, thought patterns, and habits die hard. 

It’s time to understand and challenge your unproductive beliefs, underlying thoughts, and sabotaging habits around decision-making so you can choose more empowering thoughts and feelings to take action. 

Any of these beliefs sound familiar:

  • Good decisions take a long time
  • More planning makes a better decision
  • You feel good when you find the right decision 
  • You have to do lots of research to know all the variables before deciding
  • There is a right decision and you just have to find it 
  • You need more information to make a better decision (sometimes true)
  • It’s better to do something; small busywork and at least accomplish something, than deciding on the big things
  • It’s risky to decide. It’s safer to stay stuck in indecision and comfortable in the same place rather than be hurt from potential failure, rejection or disappointment
  • It’s wrong to fail and make bad decisions
  • Someone else must have the answer for you
  • You’re easy going and get along with everyone so you let other people decide
  • You can’t trust yourself 
  • You don’t know enough
  • You’ll know it’s the right decision when you see the whole path clearly open up 
  • You can think your way through life and never have to make a false step
  • You see other people succeeding and think they must have the key to what decisions to make so you try to imitate them

TO DO

  1. When you notice yourself hesitating to make a decision, ask yourself which unhelpful decision-making belief is operating
  2. Create a new thought to practice that conjures the feeling of courage, determination or grit to move you into action

OUTCOME

You notice your unhelpful beliefs, thoughts, and habits and create a new mindset around decision-making that compels you to take action. You spend less time in your head worrying about making the wrong decision and more time actually moving forward on your goals

7. CHANGE YOUR SELF CONCEPT & TRUST YOURSELF

You’ve made decisions on your vision, purpose, goals, tasks, failed, shared your journey and uncovered unhelpful beliefs. 

Now it’s time to change your self-concept and learn to trust yourself to be a master decision-maker. 

It can be as simple as practicing the thought: “I’m the type of person who does what they say they’re going to do” and then taking action to build evidence to support the new self-concept. 

Imperfectly, flawed, worried, messy, a work in progress, and still learning. 

You’re the expert in your own life and can be trusted to make new, powerful decisions that will transform your life and propel you toward your big vision. 

TO DO

  1. Practice thinking some variation of: “I’m the kind of person who makes up their damn mind and gets to work”

OUTCOME

With each step you take, you build confidence, trust, and belief in your ability to decide. 

About the author

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Linda Drosdowech

I’m an Executive Coach for professionals, leaders and entrepreneurs in Canada, U.S. and Europe to help my clients achieve goals, self-motivation, mental wellness, growth mindset and strong decision making skills.

I’m passionate about empowering my clients to trust their decisions, prioritize their needs and make time for pleasure.

I’m also an inspiring speaker, trainer, facilitator, and community builder, and I believe it’s possible - and delightful - to change our paths at any stage of life.

I take my clients through a simple process to get the results they crave. It’s simple - but not always easy to change! That’s where coaching comes in.

I help my clients make goals and keep on track of their plans, process feelings, check thoughts, evaluate results, stay accountable to their vision, coach on old patterns and habits, and make doable action plans for the week. And celebrate wins!

I strive to be accountable to the practice of being anti-racist, pro LGBTQ+ rights, and inclusive.

I live in Winnipeg, Canada with my two daughters (one is away at college), and one rather large dog.

Walks in nature, yoga, drawing for fun, community, and many cups of tea throughout the day keep me relatively balanced and happy.

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