A Decision with a Hard Choice.

We don't know where life takes us and if we know, we know barely. A key to unlocking a puzzle of life is the hardest choice sometimes depending on the situation.

The keys and the door
Imagination forces us to search for possibilities and proper ways to live satisfying lives. In that process we find ourselves wrestling with a lot of tough choices. Hard choices come into the vicinity of possibilities when we try to expand the horizon of a better life.

We may experience uncomfortable feelings before doing something or making a decision due to cognitive dissonance which makes us hold on to opposing beliefs based on the alternative we have. We may end up feeling ashamed for deciding to do contrary to what we believe is the right thing to do.

The psychologist Leon Festinger published his theory of cognitive dissonance in his 1957 book, A Theory of Cognitive Dissonance.

Festinger suggested that people feel discomfort when they hold clashing beliefs or when their efforts oppose their conceptions.

To resolve cognitive dissonance we need cognitive consistency. Cognitive consistency is a psychological theory that recommends that humans are inspired by inconsistencies and a preference to change them. 

Cognitive inconsistencies cause an imbalance in individuals and the tension from this imbalance motivates people to alter these inconsistencies and thus, make hard decisions. The neural basis of rationalization: cognitive dissonance reduction during decision-making.

Morever, deciding is like opening the gate to new challenges and experiences. We get ourselves sailing on troubled waters, and sometimes it's peaceful water we sail on. Mindset and positioning our choices into careful thinking and analysis of the situation we try to overcome. Then life gives us chances to make hard decisions that make our choices even harder as we solve the puzzle of hard choices.
The choices we make in life daily are what make us who we are as happy and successful individuals.
If we didn't make hard choices maybe we have to. And if we did make hard choices it's who we are today.

Every time we want to make serious choices we hold the keys to the door of what to do and not to. Eventually, we become part of the choices we make daily.

The young person learns to make hard choices before being an adult. And that's the way of being responsible for own life and making progress.

A choice to start a business, a choice to invest in a certain project, a choice to buy a certain product, a choice to travel, a choice to move to a certain place or country, a choice to get married, a choice to go to college and so on. These serious choices need to be taken with preparation and readiness for their outcomes.

A choice to buy something, for example, costs an amount of money that must be paid to acquire or produce anything. Nearly every action a person makes uses up money, time, or both. That money or time could be used for other things a person values.

So, the decision should be positively reflecting needs, values, circumstances, and so on.

The choice to start and grow depends on the motives behind that choice.

The driving force to that choice may be to change the current situation we are in or become a helpful and useful part of the society we live in and so on.

A comparative relation between alternatives on what is important at the time of deciding is of great concern. In hard times one choice should be better depending on reasons for going one way as opposed to the other way with quality and necessity.

A bad relationship, life hardship, discrimination, humiliation, disrespect, and so on, maybe a reason to decide what is best for a person in a situation of vulnerability and emotional damage. 

Self-dedication that changes are for you, believing in the power of a dream and change, self-encouragement, and self-appreciation as well as being ready to face the results of your decision and choices you make.
Choices for Self-healing and focusing on the main life goals are very important.

Characteristics of worthwhile choices and decisions.

  • Bring positive changes to ourselves and the people around us or the society.
  • Motivate and show direction to reach a life-improving goal.
  • Its outcome is likely to bring long-lasting benefits.
  • Gives light to a way deeper self-discovery and understanding.
  • Passion-driven and dutifully deciding to switch to following your dream and doing what you like or something you are good at is always a worthwhile choice.

Each day we manage to make those tough choices, we wake up as survivors of the day before, ready to survive again another day. This is how our world's reality is.

Thomas Gilovich and his team's Research in the 1990s shows that to act on a hard decision can be difficult and we may regret it at once but will enjoy the results of the choices we made. Therefore, it is worth taking a hard decision because you got one choice among the hard choices.

Hardly do we make decisions based on hard choices we are less likely to regret for the rest of our lives. Deciding to do and not doing lies in between a sense of regret and achievements worth fighting for.

In the end, difficult choices make us stand a chance to live happily, grow, and restore respect and dignity.

And also becoming successful, if we do them rationally and carefully, considering the situations under which we make decisions and those choices.


Gilovich, T., Medvec, V. H., & Chen, S. (1995). Commission, omission, and dissonance reduction: Coping with regret in the "Monty Hall" problem. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 21(2), 182–190. https://doi.org/10.1177/0146167295212008

Voigt, K., Murawski, C., Speer,S., & Bode,S.(2019). Hard Decisions Shape the Neural Coding of Preferences. Journal of Neuroscience, 39 (4) 718-726; DOI: https://doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1681-18.2018

Also, find out more about hard choices in life in the TED talk video. https://www.ted.com/talks/ruth_chang_how_to_make_hard_choices?language=en

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