The Default Option

“In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.”

Theodore Roosevelt

“The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide that you are not going to stay where you are.”

Chauncey Depew

Decisions are never easy. Even the ones we have certainty and conviction on can still leave us with doubt and uncertain in the back of our mind. ‘Is this a good idea?’ ‘Should I really do this?’ ‘But what if I fail?’ There’s very little certainty in creativity and life.

But there is one thing I’m certain about: The default option is never a great idea.

Defaulting is deciding not to decide. It’s meeting a fork in the road and deciding to do nothing. Sometimes, deciding to do nothing can work out in our favor. Being Switzerland (neutral) and not taking a side in other people’s conflicts has its benefits. However, when it comes to decisions that will personally affect our lives, staying inactive is not a great idea.

Doing nothing is also a decision. It leaves the outcome to chance, or worse — other people’s desire for what our life should be, without considering what we personally want our life to be. There’s little upside to non-decisions in life. The cost of inaction far outweighs the cost of action and potential failure.

Do we want to do nothing and get nowhere, or do we want to try something and possibly fail or embarrass ourselves? I think I’d rather embarrass myself than hold myself back from who I am or the dreams I’m pursuing.

Default is an option we can make. The question is do we really want to live our life in default mode?

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #699

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