So how could I even suggest that flipping a coin be a way to make the baby decision? Particularly when I've seen hundreds of people of the year to help them through the decision making process?!?!
This column by the Guardian columnist Oliver Burkman Find it hard to make a big decision? Don’t overthink it really resonated with me. Much of what I do in coaching is helping people 'get out of their own way'. Most people who come to coaching for the baby decision, have been thinking and analysing this decision to the point where they feel completely overwhelmed. They've been relying on their head/brain to lead the decision. There is a belief that the answer to any problem will come if we think hard enough about it, if we analyse enough the answer will become clear.
'Hence the paradox: we fret and stew, as if hoping through sheer effort to see into the future. In the worst case, we end up choosing none of the potentially good options, but a definitively bad one – paralysis – instead. That is the fate of “Buridan’s ass”, the hypothetical donkey, positioned equidistantly between hay and water, that is hungry and thirsty in equal measure and stays rooted to the spot, thus starving to death.'
Most of my coaching clients come with that horrible feeling of paralysis. Paralysis can be a great way to avoid making a decision. As long as we are in that limbo state, we don't have to make a decision that has the potential to be so life changing. And, as Burkman points out, it's agonising the constant fretting and worrying about what possible disasters will await us if we make the wrong choice. I hear it again and again that people feel the weight of making a bad decision - and if only they could see into the future, the could decide.
So Burkman's suggestion that we flip a coin to make these important decision comes from the acknowledgement that many decision we make can't be made with logic alone. As a coach, my role is to help people find enough trust, in their intuition AND most importantly in their ability to deal with whatever the future holds, whatever road their decision take them on. In order to get out of the 'flip-flopping' between the option of becoming a parent and staying child free and making that 'sudden, intuitive, semi-random choice' that Burkman points out is a crucial part of the decision making process, many people need support along the way to find ways to quiet their saboteur and listen to their intuition which often has had the answer for us all along.