Home > Leadership, The Monday Musings Column > feeling the force

feeling the force

Last week I talked about celebrating mistakes, and that was still fresh in mind when I read something on social media about trusting your instincts and that makes a nice connection.

I am a firm believer in having a decision making process and using that to constantly fine tune the way that you move forwards, but there are times when the experience that you have developed isn’t enough.

We have to move outside of our sphere of experience if we want to develop, so when you push boundaries you have to make decisions using other tools, and the greatest of these is your instinct.

Faced with a fork in the road and with no information to guide you the one thing that you need to do is to not worry about getting it wrong. In most cases with such decisions there is not a right and a wrong choice, rather that one choice may be better than the other, but both will move you forward.

Fear of failure is a massive factor in decision paralysis, but the reality is that if you learn to believe in yourself, to trust your judgement and ability to make the best of what you find then you will progress; what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

One of my favourite quotes, and one I have used in these scribblings before is from the great Swedish rally driver Eric Carlson. When asked what went through his mind when approaching a blind crest whilst racing through the forest at night and at over 100 mph he paused for a moment before answering “Well, the road must go somewhere”.

What you will find when you take your own leap into the unknown is that some of what you encounter is familiar and that what you have learned so far can be put to work. You will be learning new things too and growing your knowledge base, and part of what you learn is that there really is nothing to fear about trying something new.

Sometimes these adventures will not work out as well as you had hoped and at other times you will know that you didn’t make the best decision and that is another aspect of learning as I said last week. If you can celebrate those mistakes then you should have no fear of failing.

You will also have come to another stage in your development for there are two types of people; those who make things happen and those to whom things happen. You know which you would rather be, and when you get there be sure to pass on how it works to your team because the better they get the better they will make you look.

Once you can trust your instinct and become comfortable with decision making then you will have become one of those people who have some control over their destiny, and that has to be worth aiming for. “Use the force, Luke” as Obi-Wan put it.


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