What to do when you don’t know what to do

Magic 8 ball

I think the main reason I can’t plan ahead is because I cannot make decisions easily. A current big decision in my life has a deadline (usually helps) and yet I’ve consulted friends, pros and cons lists, astrology, Twitter, my mum…. and still not worked out either what I want, or what I should do.

Ask anyone for help in this situation and they very kindly tell you to be selfish, to decide what you want and do what’s best for you – but that is exactly the problem. I don’t have a clue, and I was brought up to think selfish people are bastards (and it’s true, they really are). Sure, I could tell you what I want in fantasy land – a townhouse off Regent’s Park, a kitten and a book deal, thank you very much – but in reality, I don’t bloody know. When there are so many options, and your choices pretty much don’t affect anyone but yourself, what do you do? Does it even matter? With no big plan ahead of me, how do I know what the next step is if there’s no path that it sets off?

That’s the first time that’s really occurred to me: being single and pretty independent means nothing I decide will really have an effect on anyone else. So why do I struggle so much to make one, and why do I allow others’ decisions to have such an impact on me? It should feel liberating to know I can do whatever I want, but instead it makes me feel even more lost, overwhelmed and desperately looking for a connection to something that I can base my decision on.

This is the problem with not having a clear life plan, the way some do. You end up blindly making choices, relying on fate or just going for the easy option rather than knowing it’s the right stepping stone towards your future. That’s not to say I think one way is right and the other wrong; a good friend always tells me to avoid the ‘shoulds’, which I imagine crop up a lot in well-planned lives – but I guess the opposite is knowing what you simply want to do and going for it, no matter what the consequences.

I haven’t worked that out yet. So until I do, I’ve decided… I’m going to check out all the options. Yes, I’ve decided not to decide. It might be a bit of a cop out, but I’m hoping something might stand out as the right choice, even if my head can’t quite make it to that conclusion just yet. Wish me luck…