When we ask for advice, people always culminate their response with the phrase, “Well, just do what you think is best.” But, what does that truly mean? When we’re at a crossroads or experiencing a dilemma, the point is – we don’t know what’s best! What does it truly mean to “do what’s best for you.” How do we overcome everyday challenges that are often confusing and stressful?
Introspection is needed for finding what’s best. Introspection is a psychological process that involves looking inward to examine one's own thoughts, emotions, judgments, and perceptions. Introspection can help us better understand our beliefs and outlook on life, and likewise, it can allow us to be more independent in our thinking and make decisions that have better outcomes and benefit. (Verywellmind, 2022). Introspection is helpful because you have to think about the way you function to understand what’s best for you.
However, we often bypass our thoughts, meaning we forget a lot of the things we think about throughout the day. We also forget how we feel during different moments throughout the day. But, when you are looking at your thoughts on paper, it makes you reflect and realize the way you work. Write out your perspective on the things you did today, the things you liked, the things you don’t like, and why.
2. Consider the outcome you want before coming to a conclusion.
What do you want to happen or be accomplished as a result of your decision? Is the purpose of your decision just to come out with the least amount of hardship or discomfort, or do you have a specific goal and vision in mind (Bentham, Jeremy. Stanford.edu, 2015.)? If it’s the first, consider the things and outcomes you don’t like. Doing what’s best means you should take action to avoid these outcomes. If it’s the second, that might require more extensive planning.
If you have a goal that requires risk, take time to plan. Instead of spiraling and thinking,“What if this happens, or what if that happens?” rather think,“If this happens, I have a plan.”Have a plan for the outcomes you want to prevent. You can even talk to others who have been through similar situations. Journal your concerns about the decisions you need to make and plan accordingly.
3. Try New Things
Wisdom comes from experience. “Wisdom is nothing but the stored memories of miscalculations, good decisions, and outcomes (Sheng, Ying, 2023).” When we try new things, we gain more knowledge and insight into different situations in life. The more available information we have, the more we’re able to make better decisions and understand our parameters. “There is no alternative for experience. Wisdom is something that can only be learned individually through personal experience. This means that wisdom doesn’t come from a book or through the information that someone else tells you —you have to learn, feel, and experience the journey of life on your own (Sheng, Ying, 2023)” to truly understand what’s best for you.