Train For Life Empowerment Tip 126: A process I use to make decisions



“The travesty is not making the wrong decision; it is staying stuck and never making one." - Terrie


I have been faced with a lot of decisions lately, which prompted me to think about the importance of decision-making. We all make 100's of decisions every day. Things as simple as, do I hit the snooze button or get up, what do I wear today, and do I have time for coffee? These are not decisions that require a lot of thought, but many decisions do. Things like, do I move, do I start a business, do I have a baby, do I get married? These questions are more complex, require more time to process, and the decision you make may impact other people—more reason to be more intentional with big decisions. I developed a decision-making Model called the 5P Change Model® while pursuing my master's in Organization Development at Queen’s University. I am sharing the model in this post, hoping that you find it useful. The 5P's are Pause, Process, Plan, Pivot, and Process. This 5 step process is not always linear, but it does provide a framework for making more mindful decisions.

When you have an important decision to make, consider using the 5P Change Model.


  1. Take an intentional PAUSE from your busy life to give time and attention to important decisions.

  2. Take time to PROCESS decisions so you can gain clarity. Ask yourself: Why is this decision important, What is my motivation, What are my goals, What will happen if I don't make the decision, What will happen if I do make this decision, and who will be impacted? Take a holistic approach when answering these questions by listening to your heart, mind, and body. Using this holistic process allows you to tap into your wisdom. A personal note on this is later in this post.

  3. Develop a PLAN to support your newfound clarity.

  4. Then take that first step and PIVOT by putting your decision into action.

  5. Not all decisions work out, but you can always PIVOT again and make another decision. Very little in life is permanent, which also goes for decisions.

  6. Follow this process and PROCEED with greater intention and purpose.


On a personal note, the word WISDOM has become a compass for me. I have been pausing more to notice what is driving my decisions and choices in life. It is easy to slip into "headspace thinking" and ignore the whispers of your heart, or the flip side, making decisions or reacting from a place fueled only by emotion. I believe wisdom is that sweet balance of making decisions and processing life in a more holistic fashion by trusting your heart, mind, and body to work together. Wisdom doesn't react... it takes its time. It may even encourage you to pause until "all feels good in your soul." Making wise decisions and choices is not easy, but I believe worth the extra effort.


"Don't let your head boss you around, give yourself time for your heart and body to weigh in"

- Terrie


Self-Reflection Question

How can you use the 5P Change Model when making decisions? What does wisdom mean to you, and how can you use it to make more mindful decisions?


Share this information with someone who may need to hear it.


There is power in the pause! Terrie


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