What is my most effective way of making decisions?

I go with the feel.  That is, if I am feeling anything.  Sometimes it is like trying to find your rhythm, you know that sense that all your moves are in sync.  But one thing I know is that when I try to make a decision on a conscious level then there are no guarantees that it will work out the way it’s supposed to.

But I do have some techniques I use for getting into the decision making zone.  One thing I like to do is to list my options.  I like lists anyway because they are such a random way of getting things to start to make sense.

Today’s list:

Make out a list of things I need to finish 

Read the sport’s section 

Make coffee 

Workout at Y

Watch Bill Maher rerun

Set up the corporation tasks for the fair

Finish off the left over filing

Enter new receipts in QB

Breakfast

Now comes the fun, prioritizing.  I have a natural tendency, doesn’t everyone, to procrastinate so looking at the list for urgent items forces me to face myself.  I like to read too much, I like to take advantage of the sunny days to ride my bike and hit the beach.  Oh yeah, I just remembered an important element of listing.  For my list to work, I have to include the starting date.  Today is 02/24/2008.

Now some people might rewrite their list in order to prioritize but frankly I still like the random too much to let that element go.  As I said earlier, I go with the feel.  And one of the things I like feeling about a random list is that there is no boss telling me what I have to work on first.  Just me and my feeling for what I want to do.  Of course, as you should be able to tell some things are easier to check off than others.

Another thing about lists is that once I have made one I can let it sit, say while I finish my coffee and the sports page, then go back to it and add the things my mind has thought up in the interim. 

Check my email

Read the blogs where I have an ongoing interest

Write my post for the day

Pick tomorrow’s writing idea

Write my email replies

Think – Is there anything else?

Yes, actually, I have a decision I need to make.  Three days ago, I received an offer from a site to run an ad for their services, on this blog.  The offer was couched in very flexible terms.

Most of our customers are making ends meet on a small budget and require short-term loans and may not even qualify for more traditional loans. I appreciate that your stance on our industry may be negative, but assure you that we are not out to editorialize or sway you in any way. To be frank, even a post about reasons to avoid payday loans would probably prove beneficial, while of course not vilifying our company in any way.

I am ultimately interested in getting an article/paid post up that links to our site. I’d be happy to provide a post/article (with your approval, of course) that links to our site or you are welcome to write your own.

If you feel that a paid post/article is not for you, I’d be happy to discuss the possibility of just a text link or blurb.

I am open to discussing cost at any point.

I’d love for this to be as mutually beneficial as possible, so if you have any other ideas that would work for both of us, please feel free to mention them.

The site itself carries on with the same reasonable tone you see in the quote above but still it is a site that ultimately needs to be looked at with extreme caution.  If you are already in financial straits then think of this as taking a ride down the rapids.  However, with that said, the site sticks to its guns.  It offers relief but it tells you up front what the costs will be.  $25 per $100 borrowed up to a max of $600.  And then if offers this is one feature I really think sets it apart.  It takes the opportunity of your visit to teach you how, through a series of short but sensible articles, to take control of your finances through budgeting strategies, credit card payoff snowballs, and financial education about other borrowing plans that might be available.

So here’s the deal.  How do I want to handle this.  Getting a loan against your paycheck is a desperation move especially if the amount you need is so large that you clearly won’t be able to repay it in time.  Then you are looking at a vig that compounds exponentially.  It seems to be a sure road to bankruptcy.  Do I want to place this opportunity on my blog as an ad?  Do I want to just leave it with this post as a story readers may peruse and then choose for themselves?  Right now my feeling is to go with the post and contact Travis at Payday about some of the options he listed above.

One last thing – another aspect of my listing decision making technique is that sometimes, just like in this post, the thing I really need to work out isn’t on the list, it’s in my head getting ready to be decided.

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