September 23, 2008
How many times have you realized you made the wrong decision, but it was too late? In his new book, Before You Do: Making Great Decisions You Won’t Regret, Bishop T.D. Jakes, says there are five crucial components to making smart decisions that won’t lead to a lifelong regret.
1. Research: Gathering Information and Collecting Data
“This is not about the destination. This is about the journey; how do I get to a good decision,” Bishop Jakes says. For example, Dr. Phil’s guest, Bruce, should ask himself if it’s fair to blame his wife for their sons’ illnesses. He should also take a step back and see what he needs to do to bond with his wife. “You can never make a good decision with bad information. A lot of people make a decision based on their emotions, but you really want to bring together, not just how you feel about it, but what are the facts.”
2. Roadwork: Removing Obstacles and Clearing the Path
Think about the obstacles blocking your path and figure out how to overcome them to attain what you want. “As you’re going through the process of moving on with your life, you’ve got to clear some things out of the way,” Bishop Jakes says to Bruce and his wife, Sabrina. “You’ve still got this ‘junk in the trunk’ that you’ve collected along the way, and you’re trying to go ahead with your life, as if you have not had a crisis. As you begin to move those obstacles out of the way, you clear the path to increase your chances of reaching the destination of living happily together.”
3. Rewards: Listing Choices and Imagining Their Consequences
The consequences are the rewards. “You have never had any small rewards along the way; little reprieves, some moments of happiness. They are very short-lived, and it’s very, very important,” Bishop Jakes tells Bruce and Sabrina. Going for long periods without satiety doesn’t make for a successful relationship. “You have not had those little ah-ha moments where you begin to really celebrate each other and have some relief from this stress and pressure … Take the power back by saying to yourself, â€˜I can’t help what happened to me, but I can change how I react to what happens to me.’ That gives you the power back.”
4. Revelation: Narrowing Your Options and Making Selections
Pray, meditate and find a way to get a clear picture on how your decision will turn out over a lifetime. Ask yourself what success looks like for you. “The revelation is that you still have many choices that you can make that are very positive and very meaningful,” Bishop Jakes explains. “You get the revelation of seeing things correctly. When you see better, you do better.”
5. Rearview: Looking Back and Adjusting as Necessary to Stay on Course
When revisiting a decision, decide if your choice accomplished what you set out to do. “Looking back on the situation and putting it behind you, assessing it and getting it in perspective is very, very important, because our wisdom is accumulated from when we look back at situations, we and learn from them. That’s why, hopefully, as we get older, we get wiser,” Bishop Jakes says.
For more information on Bishop T.D.Jakes’ book, Before You Do: Making Great Decisions that You Won’t Regret, click here.