We make both conscious and unconscious decisions every minute of every day leading to positive and negatives outcomes, shaped by knowledge, experience and emotions. I have been guilty of making very rash decisions based upon my emotions with mixed results.
When I talk about decisions I am not talking about the micro decisions we make on a daily basis such as; what to wear or what to eat. Although these may impact upon our lives on a superficial level, I am talking about the decisions that have far ranging consequences upon self and wider society.
On Saturday I attended a charity night on behalf of a service user who took their own life. I had interacted with them but not undertaken any direct work with them. I was aware of the challenges in their life but I didn’t fully understand the complexities of these issues.
The night was full of friends and family all coming together to celebrate a life lived. For me this highlighted the degree to which the decisions we make can affect a vast number of people, leaving those behind with an array of unanswered questions. Some may say that it was a selfish thing to do especially when leaving children to grow up without a parent. However there was a multitude of complex issues that influenced this persons decision.
What must it feel like to be in that very moment when you are hurting so much you cannot envisage it ever going away nor it ever changing, these are powerful thoughts that take the most extreme outcome.
I have in the past been in some dark places where these thoughts of not being around have crossed my mind, not strongly enough to act on them and probably more to do with curiously than anything else. In my life I have made decisions just because I wanted to know the outcome, which have not not always been in my best interests. I have many more important decisions to make in the near future. I am bad at making decisions, due to not wanting to hold myself accountable for the outcomes.
Having to make these decisions is not a process that I find easy nor is it a process that happens quickly. I have come to understand that decisions made in response to my own emotions have for me at least been negative. I have learned to adjust my decision making to take into account the risk vs gain, along with accepting responsibly for the outcome.
“The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live.” – Flora Whittemore –