One Simple Rule for Never Making a Bad Decision 

A (Humorous) Answer to Life’s Most Difficult Problem

Sam Bush / 2.22.21

This is going to sound crazy, I know. But after weeks of research and deliberation, I have discovered the one fool-proof silver bullet for never doing anything regrettable again. (I’m the one that all of those researchers and therapists hate for sharing this information online.) Well, without further ado, here it is, my valuable bit of wisdom: Don’t do anything.

You read that right: Just don’t. Do. Anything. Actually, it’s probably best that you don’t even think about doing anything, so please stop thinking about doing something.

I know what you’re thinking: Doing nothing is not very appealing. Especially if you are the kind of person who always needs a solution. Or if you are experiencing pain. Or if you are tired of feeling stuck and powerless and would like some semblance of control. In that sense, I understand and am with you. In my defense, however, I would argue the following: You are not in any state of mind to make good decisions right now. If you disagree, closing your browser right now would not be a good decision. It’d actually prove my point.

Here is my argument that you are probably not in a state of mind to make good decisions: You are probably tired, hungry, and not feeling well. None of those things has ever led to a good decision. If you absolutely insist on doing something right now, please, have a nap, drink some coffee, eat a Snickers, and then check back in with me.

Now that you’re feeling a little better, I still don’t think it’s the right time to make any big decisions. After all, it’s still cold outside, and the snow has mostly lost its novelty. February is what a friend of mine calls “the month of difficulty.” On top of calling February the month of difficulty, my friend argues that one should never make any big decisions during this month. Don’t get married, don’t buy a car, don’t change jobs, and most definitely don’t re-decorate your house. I think he has a point.

Long before seasonal affective disorder was diagnosed, February was considered the doldrums of the calendar year. Even in 8th century B.C., when the Romans first set the calendar according to planting and harvesting, January and February weren’t even included. Winter was simply a nameless, meaningless void. That’s the situation we’re dealing with right now. See what I mean? Not the best time to make any big decisions.

Not to be intrusive, but you still seem like you’re thinking about doing something. I understand: COVID has made life kinda crazy, your faith is in the throes of doubt, you’re questioning every decision you’ve ever made, and you just had a big fight with your spouse. Feels like a good time to sign your name on the dotted line of some legal paperwork, right? Wrong.

Here’s my last argument for not making any decisions right now: It’s Lent. The powers-that-be really knew what they were doing when they decided that Lent would fall during the season when a person shouldn’t make any big decisions. It’s really great timing, especially since most of your ambitions and aspirations from January have crashed and burned frozen by now. There’s just not that much to do besides doing nothing — or, rather, nothing besides “entering into a time of stillness, self-reflection, grief, and repentance.”

If you’re still with me, let me reiterate: I understand. All you want is to snap out of your malaise. I want that for you, too. Doing something now might not be the best decision.

Instead, there’s a good chance that something is already being done about it. Even better, something was already done about it a long time ago for your sake. In that sense, being still and knowing that the Lord is God isn’t a commandment, but permission to do nothing. It’s an invitation for a Power beyond yourself to change and guide you. It allows the earth to keep on spinning; for the sun to keep on rising, all by itself, without your help. After all, March is right around the corner.

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6 responses to “One Simple Rule for Never Making a Bad Decision ”

  1. Paul says:

    Hill and Wood!

  2. DZ says:

    Ha!! This is so great

  3. Molly says:

    Unless you want to sell your house, then sell it now, rather than later.
    Hope you and your family are well!

  4. Christina says:

    This is exactly what the British Queen does, at least as depicted in the Crown. Making as few decisions as possible means way less people can find you at fault for them, at least it keeps her approval ratings up! And I think she’s the head of a whole Church, so maybe she’s onto something!

  5. Howie Espenshied says:

    “being still and knowing that the Lord is God isn’t a commandment, but permission” …. good stuff

  6. FJ says:

    Not deciding is a decision

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