Decision-making is not always the simplest, it can be daunting weighing out options, and often, therapists, life coaches, and even loved ones cannot always help. In times like that, it’s easy to feel alone with our decisions, leading to a feeling of being overwhelmed and conflicted.
Our choices can lead to long-term life changes, making it even more challenging to decide on what to do. However, you are not alone, and it does get easier. Dr. Kabiri can provide expert insights and tips on making the right decision for your goals.
Through her decision-coaching program, Dr. Kabiri is a decision science expert who helps people get real, move forward, and minimize regret. She has spent over two decades studying how people make decisions in various contexts, from personal endeavors to business to politics to relationships.
She teaches decision science at the University of Washington. She is the founder and owner of Your Next Decision and Kabiri Consulting, where she uses decision science principles to help her clients make the right choices. She’s also a co-author of the bestselling book Money Off the Table: Decision Science and the Secret to Smarter Investing.
Dr. Kabiri has a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Washington, where her academic focus was on choice theory and decision-making within constraints. She also has a JD from the University of Texas.
Her educational and professional background has enabled Dr. Kabiri to help her clients form conscious decisions across the globe.
Dr. Kabiri shares a five-step approach to making the right decision:
- Know your end game. This isn’t the same as objectives or goals. Instead, it’s about what options you have available as you near those goals. Each decision opens us up to new possibilities and closes us off to others. Knowing what options you want available to you down the road makes it easier to know what decisions you need to make today.
- Unless you have no time and no information to make a decision, don’t use your gut. Our “guts” are generally impulsive and informed by personal experience. Impulsivity happens when we’re trying to manage emotions, so impulsive decisions might make us feel better in the short term, but not where it counts. Personal experience provides us with limited information; good decision-making relies on knowing more than what we know, especially what our experiences are just about what we remember, and our memories are notorious for failing us.
- Be aware of your mental shortcuts and biases. The human brain is wired for efficiency, which means it will jump to a decision before gathering all the necessary information, relying too much on what we already know rather than on what we need to know. We need to slow down, think things through carefully, and assume that we’re not thoughtful decision-makers unless we do the work.
- Be aware of how social “forces” unnecessarily influence your decisions. We are social creatures, which means the world around us influences our choices. We want to belong, so we go along with what others do. We follow social rules, even when those rules don’t work for us. We feel safe when we’re doing what the majority is doing, even when what they’re doing isn’t working for us. The more we pay attention to how these social influences affect our decision-making, the more equipped we will be to make the best choices for us.
- Don’t judge the quality of your decision by the outcome. What happens in life is due to so many factors out of our control that judging a decision by how things turn out isn’t reasonable. Instead, consider the quality of a decision by its process. Good choices are free of impulse, bias, and social influence. They also set you up for better decisions down the road.
For a more detailed process catered to your personal situation, book a consultation with Dr. Kabiri on Your Next Decision for expert advice that makes the decision-making process less grueling and as efficient as possible for you.
Follow Nika Kabiri on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/nikakabiri