How One Simple Choice Gives You Complete Control over Your Life

By on April 1, 2012

By Lynn Baber –

If you could make your life more peaceful, productive, and rewarding by making just one simple choice between two options – wouldn’t you agree to make that choice? How much simpler could it be to eliminate stress, enjoy a fantastic quality of life, and achieve greater success than making one simple choice?

Who wouldn’t love to get complete control over their time, resources, and relationships? The good news is that you can. The bad news is there are actually two choices you need to make – depending on how you look at it.

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The Most Fundamental Choice

The principle of decision making I’m going to share with you applies no matter which of the following two options you choose, but only one option will allow you to live a truly blessed and simple life.

The first choice that must be made is between God and Not God. The God I refer to is the God of the Bible, exactly as He tells us He is. Every other decision you make will be fundamentally based on this first decision. This choice is an absolute choice which means there is no middle ground. You either choose God or you don’t.

The Simple Choice That Gives You Control

The only way you can lose control of your life is to give it away. No one can take it from you.

It is true that you can’t control every circumstance of your life, but the degree to which you are peaceful and content is already 100% within your control. People spend every second of time, every dollar, and every bit of energy as a result of making a choice between one thing and another – just like the choice between God and Not God.

When you are asked to take on yet another new project at church or commit to car-pooling kids to one more weekly appointment, what choices do you really have? You have the power to decide whether or not you want to spend your time, money, and energy doing the project or driving the kids.

Saying yes means you will personally benefit more than by saying no. If you don’t want to say yes then the only reason to agree is because you would rather add another burden to your list than have the other person be disappointed or think poorly of you. In either case, you will always make the choice that benefits you most.

How to Make a Decision When You Can’t Decide

Sometimes making a decision is just too complicated because there are too many possibilities. Perhaps your to-do list is so long that you don’t know where to begin – so you simply don’t. There are too many television programs to choose among, too many books to know which to read, too many special-interest groups that sound interesting, too many Facebook friends, too many emails, and too many choices of every kind that it’s easier to do nothing rather than pick any one thing from the whole mess.

Here’s the simple way to make one choice when there are too many options to manage. Everyone has shopped for blue jeans. Let’s use buying jeans to illustrate the principle of simple decision making.

Imagine you tried on dozens of pairs and ended up with 14 pairs of jeans you would like to buy. Your budget will only let you buy one pair. How can you decide which of the 14 pairs of jeans to keep?

Here’s the way you make a decision when you can’t decide:

  • Hold up one pair of jeans in your right hand and one pair in your left hand. If these were the only two pair you had to consider, which pair would you buy? Keep the pair you like the best and pitch the other into your discard pile.
  • Now, hold up that pair you kept in one hand and pick up another pair in the other. Of these two pairs of jeans, which would you rather keep?
  • Repeat this simple choice between two options until you are left with the best pair of jeans in your hand and the 13 losers are in your discard pile. You’re done!

Use this same either/or method to prioritize your to-do list, select a TV program, or order from a menu.

Choosing one pair of jeans doesn’t mean you wouldn’t like to keep all the others, but that option simply doesn’t exist, which leads me to the next point.

Making Decisions When You Don’t Like Any of Your Options

Many people choose not to make any proactive decision because the list of possibilities doesn’t include an option they like. The simple truth is that choosing the status quo is in itself a proactive decision. It is a decision that says “I like where I am better than my other choices.”

Women who are victims of domestic violence often remain in their circumstances. There are only two possible reasons why – they are unable to leave or they are unwilling to leave. A woman is unable to leave only if she is not physically or mentally capable of escaping from the home. Being unwilling to leave means that the woman has made the decision that staying is somehow preferable to leaving.

I’m very familiar with this subject and am not trivializing it in any way. I know women who choose to remain with a violent husband because they are unwilling to leave their perfectly decorated home or unwilling to lose the benefits of their lifestyle. This is a personal choice and such women prefer victimhood over their other options. Each woman’s circumstance may differ but the principle of decision making does not.

Are you being victimized? Then why aren’t you changing your circumstances? There is always another option, even if it is nothing more than deciding not to feel like a victim.

God is in Control When You Aren’t

Now we will return to that first fundamental choice. If you chose God over Not God you believe that there is nothing He is unable to manage and no length to which He is unwilling to go to fulfill His promises. That truth is the secret of peace and security regardless of your circumstances.

You are in control of your schedule and how you spend your money. You control which relationships to invest in and which ones to end. Every complex problem will eventually simplify to a choice between one thing and another.

Every choice is yours to make.

Have a comment or a situation that you think may be an exception to this rule? Drop an email to [email protected].

About Lynn Baber

Lynn Baber is a Christian writer who shares simple messages of faith over fear by reducing complex issues into simple either/or choices. Lessons learned throughout her forty year career as a business consultant, motivational speaker, and World and National Champion horse breeder, trainer, and judge, are shared in print, in person, and in the round pen working with troubled horses. Read more on her blog, Simple truth - Simple Faith: Follow her ministry message on Amazing Grays Ministry:


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How One Simple Choice Gives You Complete Control over Your Life