Making tough decisions is never easy. After all, nobody wants to be sitting at the end of a hard day thinking, “I wish I hadn’t done that.” There’s always a fear that you’ll make the wrong choice, and this can often lead to lost sleep or even worse, complete inactivity.
Nobody has experienced this more than longstanding Fox News broadcaster Megyn Kelly. After more than a dozen years at Fox, Kelly made the announcement that she will be leaving the show she loves to find new opportunities at rival news network NBC.
Big decisions cause serious stress, as Kelly is all too familiar with. But it is one’s ability to cope with this stress, find opportunity in adversity and welcome the unfamiliar that ultimately contributes toward success.
Here are four lessons you can learn from Megyn Kelly about making tough decisions in your business in 2017.
1. Focus on what really matters to you.
Instant gratification is always tempting. But here’s the catch with quick rewards, they’re always less desirable than your grand vision. Sure, giving in to temptation may seem fulfilling, but if it means constantly delaying your true aspirations, you’re not doing yourself any favors.
Kelly was offered $20 million to stay at Fox, but she focused on what was truly important to her, spending time with her kids, a luxury that her new day slot at NBC now affords her.
By forgoing a quick buck, Kelly has remained true to her aspiration of living a balanced lifestyle.
2. Don’t be afraid to surprise people.
In a time of increasingly intense political polarization and growing skepticism surrounding mainstream media, Kelly’s move to NBC has been seen as a strong endorsement of traditional news networks. Such a bold statement will undoubtedly make a lot of people angry, but Kelly seems unperturbed. Tough decisions usually provoke emotional reactions, especially when they are unexpected, but that doesn’t mean you should shy away from taking action simply because you fear a negative reaction.
3. Turn decisiveness into a habit.
Some people are chronically indecisive. They spend more time browsing a takeout menu than actually eating the dinner. The problem isn’t that they’re incapable of making good decisions, they just haven’t formed a habit of taking decisive action.
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Megyn Kelly has always been decisive, although controversy has accompanied many of her choices. Whether it’s questioning the integrity of celebrities, raising questions about the social views of politicians or challenging dubious mathematics, nobody can deny that Kelly is comfortable asking hard questions and making tough calls.
Sometimes making a decision at an opportune moment, even one that isn’t ideal, is better than not making any decision at all. The only way you’re going to distinguish the good decisions from the bad is by practicing being decisive. Worst-case scenario, you can always do some damage control.
4. Acknowledge your mistakes.
Sometimes our emotions drive our decisions off course, our excitement clouds our judgment or we simply fail to consider all the facts. Either way, a part of making better decisions is taking ownership of our oversights and admitting when we’re wrong.
Journalism is messy business, and stories can often be drowned in a sea of conflicting information, but Kelly has always been the first to admit when her predications have been wrong or her forecasts off target.
Acknowledging your mistakes will always gain you more respect than belligerently sticking to your guns. Make a habit of learning from your errors, and use them to make more accurate predictions in the future.
It’s impossible to make perfect decisions all the time, after all we’re only human. But by avoiding the temptation of quick rewards, releasing yourself from the fear of negative reactions, practicing being decisive, and acknowledging your mistakes, you’ll be well on the path to creating a 2017 that is full of purpose, progress and opportunities to learn.