It’s easy to make good decisions when you are relaxed in your body, mind and spirit, wouldn’t you say? When your amygdala, or reptilian brain, isn’t triggered in a fight, flight or freeze response, your conscious mind is online and you can think much more clearly.
So if you know you’re triggered and in a place of fear, it’s best to put off a decision until you’re no longer in an aroused, anxious state.
For example, I was supposed to work on this blog this afternoon, but instead, I put out fires and dealt with other requests of my time. This left me feeling anxious and out of sorts. So I thought, I’ll take my own advice and go meditate for 15 minutes and come back to this so that I can be more present and focused. It worked!
🌟 Exclusive E-Book for Women Leaders! 🌟
Navigate life’s challenges with my FREE e-book tailored for women leaders. Discover strength, resilience, and renewal. Download now! 📖✨
Here are some mindful practices and techniques to help you get in a mental and emotional state so you can make grounded, mindful decisions.
1. Donna Eden technique.
What it does is bring blood back to the forebrain (prefrontal cortex or conscious thinking mind) and simultaneously calm the reactive, primitive brain that is merely interested in your survival, not happiness or thriving.
TIP: Simply take the palm of one hand and rest it on your forehead, and take the other palm and rest it on the back of your head, thumb touching your brainstem.
Take a break and give your mind a chance to unwind and let go of the stresses of the day, like I just did before I wrote this blog. If you can find the motivation, start your day with a meditation practice. It can be 10-15 minutes or even less.
Don’t worry about controlling your thoughts when meditating. That’s impossible. Simply take a seat or lie down (if you don’t feel too tired that you will fall asleep). You can count your breaths if you like but it’s not necessary. Meditation is effective because you’re intending to slow down and connect with your higher consciousness. It doesn’t mean you actually HAVE TO DO anything.
TIP: If you find yourself not sure whether to take path A or B, do a 10-15 meditation. Before you do, ask yourself, “What is the best decision that will serve my highest good and everyone else’s?”
3. Asking for Higher Guidance
Right before you fall asleep at night, when your mind is hopefully in a calmer state, direct your subconscious mind to give you clarity. Some people call this prayer, while others don’t. Address your request to whatever you prefer to call the Intelligence that governs this world, such as Super Conscious Mind, God, Higher Self, Universal Intelligence, Creator, etc.
TIP: Say something like this: “Dear, Higher Self, I need to make a decision about XYZ. As I sleep, please give me clarity about which way to go. If I should pursue this course, please increase my desire to do so. If I shouldn’t pursue this path, lessen my desire and give me alternative guidance.”
4. Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) or Tapping
Say something like this while doing the setup, “Even though I’m confused about what to do, I love and accept myself. Even though I’m afraid I’m going to make the wrong decision, I accept where I’m at. Even though I don’t trust myself to make this decision because I may fail and I don’t want to be disappointed again, I choose to relax and take one step.”
Then tap through all of the points as described on this video, repeating reminder phrases or small snippets from the sentences above, such as below:
Eyebrow: I’m confused about what to do.
Side of eye: What if I make the wrong decision?
Under eye: I don’t trust myself to make this decision
Under nose: I may fail
Chin: I don’t want to be disappointed again
Collarbone: All these doubts and insecurities
Underarm: I don’t want to decide!
Top of head: Clarity feels scary
Wrist: What if I won’t die if I choose a path?
Assess what you’re feeling after the first round, and feel free to keep tapping on multiple rounds until the intensity is 3 or less.
TIP: Tap 5 minutes daily on what is challenging your peace, to train your brain to be calm, centered and focused.
So sit down for a moment, and ask your heart, by putting your hands over heart, for an image that would portray something you want.
What image would portray you as a confident, sexy, prosperous role model or leader?
For me, I see myself in dark blue jeans and a belt in my ideal shape, smiling, hands reaching to the heavens, receiving my good. People are encircling me, some touching my shoulder, in a gesture of love and support. All are sending me love and well wishes.
TIP: Practice visualizing this image a few minutes daily.
6. PQ Repetitions
When you do this repeatedly, you’re teaching your brain to snap out of the amygdala response, and instead, reclaim control of your mental state. Any action that calms your nervous system and brings your conscious, adult mind back online will aid you in making effective decisions.
TIP: When you feel hijacked by your emotions or the mean inner voice we all
have, redirect it by saying, “Ahhh…I see you!” You can leave it at that, or do something else, like rub your finger and thumb together.
There are a vast array of breathing techniques. To keep it super simple here, simply count deep belly breaths, or at least put your attention on doing them without counting. The deep breath is key. Your lower abdomen should move if you’re breathing deeply. Shallow breathing indicates an anxious, dysregulated nervous system.
TIP: When you feel anxious, remember to breathe deeply. To help establish this habit, stack it as a habit with something you already do, like go to the restroom.
These are just 7 techniques to help you make good decisions and begin to trust yourself more and more. I could write an entire book on these and many others I’ve learned over the years. The key is to pick what feels good to you. Just pick one and begin to implement it.