We all want a great life, and a great life is a quality life. A quality life is a life that is led by values that we hold dear. In order to live a life of values that we hold dear, we have to make a choice.
Making choices is a lot easier when we make a choice that we call the One Decision. The One Decision is a decision that my wife wrote about in her book of the same name, “The One Decision.” Whereas purpose is about why we live, the One Decision is about how we live. It’s a foundation for making good choices in our lives. It’s like a touchstone. A touchstone is like a diamond cutting glass. Glass is a touchstone for the diamond, and what the One Decision does is it gives us that diamond-hard test about whether we’re living the life that matters to us and whether we’re making choices that are going to satisfy and fulfill us.
Every time that we make a choice, the One Decision helps us look at the alternatives and it gives us that touchstone to say, “Is it A or is it B?” Whichever is closest to our One Decision, that’s the choice we’re going to make. A typical One Decision is what Judith talks about. She made a One Decision that she was no longer going to live pleasing people, doing what she thought others wanted her to do and that she
was going to begin living her life for a deeper sense of meaning and for greater satisfaction. Other One Decisions could have to do with living a beautiful life. I look at choice A and choice B and I ask myself which is more beautiful. A life of integrity: choice A or choice B which choice is most consonant, is guided by my One Decision. So that’s what we’re focusing on this week.What is your One Decision? What is that one absolute value by which you are going to lead your life so you make good choices – the right choices.
When choosing a career, a clear One Decision, let’s say that it has to do with leading a life of integrity. Let’s look at which job provides the greatest opportunity for us to learn integrity. Maybe learning and growing is my One Decision. So when we make a career choice, we ask ourselves just that. When we’re interviewing for a job, we ask our potential employers questions about their values. How do they make decisions in their business? How do they know they’re making choices that are from a higher value? Then once we have the job, we make good choices because choices are happening all the time at work and in our careers. We’re choosing to speak or not speak, to work hard or to not work hard, what matters or doesn’t matter.
Moreover, we’re choosing the friends that we make and the people we stay away from. Is that One Decision really determining with whom we deal? There are a lot of different One Decisions you can make. You can choose to live your life as an adventure, the way of the heart, or the power of presence. Each of these can cause us to make different decisions.
When I’m looking at a job, which one is the greatest adventure? Which one flows from my deeper desires? The greatest truth? Which seems to have the greatest heart for me? So career is guided most effectively by a clear sense of purpose–“Why you do what you do?”–and a solid One Decision. Are you going to fight the good fight? Are you going to work daily to live from these higher values?
Do people feel you or are you hiding out in meetings? A clear One Decision can help you make a choice to speak up and it’ll cause you to make more good choices–they’re not all going to be great, but you’ll be much much happier in doing that. One of the things you can do is write your One Decision down and reflect each morning. How do I want to live my day today? And you can journal what you did that day and how you did things that day to embark on a life driven by your One Decision.
Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.