Decision fatigue

Oct 17, 2020

For most people, one of the many perks of life before loss is making shared decisions: having a dialogue with your life partner, analyzing the pros and cons, then making a mutual choice and ultimately sharing ownership of the outcome, for better or worse.

Relying on one another’s strength, knowledge and experience brings a level of comfort to the process. Generally, making mutual decisions means that you have each other’s back, no matter the outcome.

Most widowed people have heard the adage, “don’t make any big decisions in the first year.” There is some truth to that, but the actual experience of losing one’s spouse means a relentless series of decisions. For some, it starts with the hospital, then the funeral home and seemingly never ends.

On the heels of the first wave of decisions come many more. Sell the house? Clean his closet? Wear the wedding ring? Get an alarm system?

We must rely solely on ourselves, precisely when we are at our very worst, and just when we need our spouse the most.

Decision fatigue is draining on a good day, and in this case, it zaps whatever energy is left. Our primitive brains are immersed in fear and scarcity, and from that place they suggest that there is always a right and a wrong decision, that decisions are irreversible, and urgent.

Yet often none of that is true. Ask yourself:

  1. When must this decision be made?
  2. What if there is no such thing as a wrong decision?
  3. What would it look like to make this decision and then have your own back?
  4. Is this decision reversible?
  5. Are there more than just two options?
  6. Are you making a decision from fear or faith?

In the spirit of never believing everything we think, we must learn to be “on to” our brains. We can become the editor of the thoughts our brains are offering us. Making decisions when we are ready and with managed minds, we can trust that there are no wrong decisions – only the decisions we make, which are right for us at the time.

If you are suffering from decision fatigue in your life after loss, my private coaching program called Life Reconstructed can help. Simply click here and we’ll see if it’s a fit. If not, I’ll offer other resources to help.

Learn more about Life Reconstructed.

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