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Simplified Thought: Using the Worst Case Scenario to Think in Black & White

Simplified Thought: Using the Worst Case Scenario to Think in Black & White

“Say what you wanna say and let the words fall out, because honestly, I wanna see you be brave” – Sara Bareilles

I wanted to write a quick one on making decisions and simplifying thought, my way.

I’m often labelled too; harsh, direct, brutal – some form of direct negative association with being a bit cut-throat. I believe this is because people are too caught up with emotion instead of logic. I’m one of those, that’s why I work on it.

Personally, I think you’re thinking too much. And that’s coming from someone who struggles to switch off even to sleep.

What’s the worst case scenario?

One of the ways I make decisions quickly (unless it’s surrounding food or something, hehe) is to simply work out the worst case scenario of taking the action. And then find a solution and or result to that problem.

So we’re not using metaphors the whole time, let’s use a few real life examples…

Example 1: to go traveling or not

So let’s get right into it, what are the worst things that can happen, followed by a solution. And when there’s no obvious or quick solution, I note down the result so that I can decide whether I actually care or not.

  • I’ve worked so hard to get to where I am career wise, I’ll have to quit. I have experience, I’ll get a new job.
  • I might miss my family and friends. Stay in contact, make new friends and start a family.
  • I might run out of money. I’ll get a job.
  • I can’t find a job. I’ll be homeless. Not ideal, but I’m not afraid.
  • The plane might crash. I’ll die. Not ideal but, I won’t live in fear.
  • Someone might rape or kill me in a third world country. That can happen at home too, be smart and look after myself.

Using just these, I have already weighed up most of the worst things that could happen. I mean, it doesn’t get much worse than death does it? And the result. Well, essentially I can deal with all of the above – so the obvious choice is to go traveling.

Example 2: to fly across the world for a girl

Really interesting one, and one which I assume will benefit quite a few people. How do I decide not only to the break the bank in order to fly across the world for what could be, but also; break travel plans I’ve worked on for a year, enter anothers’ world knowing I may be rejected, and turn up to -20 degree whether with only summer clothes, haha.

For background and context. I flew to Canada to stay with said lady, help and support her over the course of the next few months so she could save and join me traveling. Naturally, she’d be working so I needed to do things; work, travel, whatever really.

  • I don’t have the money for this, it’s not part of the plan. Money comes and goes, I’ll make more.
  • I’m not prepared, I don’t even have jeans or a coat. I’ll buy some.
  • I won’t be spending Christmas with friends or family. I’ll try it alone. (it was shit, though smoking a joint and munching lasagne was excellent)
  • What if I can’t get a job or be productive. I’ll work from home, I have some skills.
  • What if she get’s to know me better and doesn’t like me. I’ll leave.
  • What if I get to know her better and I don’t like her. I’ll leave.

That pretty much covers the worst areas of the situation I was weighing up. None are really that bad, right? I’ve had girlfriends before and all the relationships have come to an end, so I know what it’s like to lose someone I love – I can deal with it.

I asked myself, using all the above… am I willing to experience all of those negatives for the potential that I may be starting the last relationship I ever start? The answer is yes. Easy yes. Always yes. I am a big fan of love.

So the result? Do it! What’s else is there to think about? And, as quick as you’ve read this, is about as quick as I made that decision.

It didn’t work out.

Black and white every time, make it simple

Everyone always tells me it’s not black and white, it’s not that simple. But it is, YOU are making it complicated.

Ones and zeros. On and off. Yes and no. Black and white…

Most things can be brought down to these levels. Whether you are struggling to decide whether you should be with someone, deciding about a new job, risking health, choosing a pet or otherwise trying something you’re afraid of. You can always make it simple.

I ask myself certain questions, some of these may help you:

  • Do I really care about this?
  • Will it make me happy?
  • Will I learn from it?
  • Is it a new experience?
  • Is it worth risking my health and safety for?

I usually find that if it ticks at least one or two boxes, it’s worth going for it. In the two examples above, they both ticked every box.

I leave you with this to think about, read it out loud to yourself…

I can do it. I will not live in fear of rejection. I will not fear losing. I will try again. I will break my arm if I need to. I have one life, I will enjoy it. I’d rather live a short life the way I want than a long life in a miserable way. I can. I can. I can.

Simplify your thoughts, and enjoy your life… Because honestly, I wanna see you be brave!

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