Are You Ok With The Worst Case Scenario?
May 5, 2021
The quality of life we experience is a function of the decisions we have taken in our life. When it comes to making tough decisions, we always experience an internal tussle between the options that we think we want and the options we think we should be taking.
- You are in a bad job, and you are not sure whether you should quit the job without having another job in hand or should you find another job first and then leave the present one.
- You are in a high-paying job, and you get an admission into a prestigious MBA. The Tuition Fee for the MBA is $200K. Should you go for the MBA, or should you continue in the current job?
- You are in a toxic relationship and are there is a mental tug of war bothering you. Should I end the relationship or try and salvage the relationship?
Decision-making, in a way, is about resolving the tussle between the two extreme positions we grapple with.
Here’s my take on this dilemma.
Most times, we all know what we want, even if we think we don’t. But, we confuse ourselves with the alternative view that maybe what we want is not what we should do. This alternative choice represents our view of what that world thinks we should be doing. The more significant the gap between the two options, the more challenging the decision feels.
Effective decision-making happens when we manage to reconcile the two positions in our minds. When we manage to narrow the gap between the what we want to do vs. what we think we should do.
How do we bridge the gap between these two options?
Worst Case Scenario
By taking what Worst Case Scenario approach.
Imagine you are in an awful job, and you are not sure whether you should quit without a job in hand or wait till you get a job in hand. You want to leave the job immediately, but you think it might be better to hang on and keep looking for another job.
You can ask yourself, If I quit immediately, what is the worst-case scenario? And the answer you give yourself is, ” I will not get a job for at least one year, and I will have to burn 30% of my life savings.”
Ask yourself, “Would I be ok with the possibility of losing 30% of my life savings in return for peace of mind and rebuilding my self-esteem.”
If you find yourself saying YES to the possibility of the worst-case scenario, you have successfully bridged the gap between what you want and what you think you should do. Your decision is easy after this.
If, on the other hand, you have even an iota of doubt on being ok with the worst-case scenario, bailout, don’t make the decision.