“Unfortunately sometimes one can’t do what one thinks is right without making someone else unhappy.” (W.Somerset Maugham) – from the Jack’s Winning Words blog.
Maugham might have gone on to say that not doing what you know is right may end up making everyone unhappy. Have you ever known someone who tried to make everyone happy all the time and ended up just making everyone unhappy? Those are people who straddle the fence and refuse to take a side or make a decision for fear of making someone unhappy.
What this type of person doesn’t realize most of the time is that their waffling actually satisfies no one and can make things worse. They have a tendency to say to both sides in any disagreement whatever it is that they think they want to hear. Both sides temporarily think they have the support of that person for their point of view, until there is a showdown and they realize that the waffler doesn’t really support either side. Then everyone is unhappy.
People who waffle all of the time can seldom make firm decisions on just about anything. They always have doubts and are torn by FUD – fear, uncertainty and doubt. Their real problem for most of these people is a lack of self-confidence. Since they don’t feel good about themselves, they can’t get comfortable with any of the decisions that they have to make. It is just easier for them to go along with whatever way the wind in blowing at the time and to agree with the position of whomever is standing in front of them.
Many of these people seem to be analytical types – people who tell themselves that they are looking at both sides of the argument and analyzing the arguments before making a decision. The problem is that they never get to the decision point. They spend all of their time analyzing and looking at both sides. There is certainly nothing wrong with being open minded enough to see both sides of an issue. After all the opposite is to become bull-headed and rigidly set in your beliefs, no matter how wrong they have proven to be.
The key for an analytical person is to set a deadline for them self to bring closure to the analysis and make a decision based upon the facts that they have in hand at the time. That’s hard for an analytical person, but necessary to avoid ticking off everyone. Being an analytical person myself, I find that stopping to make a little Franklin chart of the “facts” at hand helps. Sometimes that also forces the re-evaluation of whether a known “fact” is actually a fact at all or just a rumor or hearsay. Usually going through that little exercise makes the choice clear.
Today is Election Day in America and we all have to stop waffling and make a decision in the voting booth. About half of the country will not be happy at the end of the day. I can’t do anything about that. I have my little Franklin Chart done and have made my decision. Hopefully, tomorrow we can all at least be happy that this “Silly Season” is over. I can’t wait for ads about laxatives and erectile dysfunction to once again take over the diner time TV ads. I think we can agree on that.
Get out and vote!