When You’re at an Impasse in a Decision
We’re stuck, my man and I.
At an impasse, and we circle to it again and again these last four days. At the coffee-shop over my dark French roast, in the car on our way home from an errand, and whispered in the dark at night before bed.
We have a decision to make that will affect not only the next two weeks, but probably the next few months as well. We hesitate because we are on opposite sides of the issue and can’t find a middle ground. He is wise and logical, and I’m looking at this in a more emotive light, I know, and yet the stakes feel high.
So we dance and parry, and gently ask questions. Probing quietly, we listen for the person’s heart behind their choice, and seek to see their side.
This is a newer skill for us, I admit. Much more prone to fall into passionate “discussions,” we are striving to do this better. Tools straight from the premarital counseling material that we teach to newly-engaged couples are, nonetheless, still hard to implement some days. It’s hard not getting your way sometimes.
Three things have helped us in past decision-making dilemmas:
1.) Listen to the why behind their decision. Listen without interrupting and with openness.
2.) Speak calmly, respectfully, and kindly when it’s your turn. Assertively share your thoughts.
3.) Remind yourself that their heart is good, and that their motives are usually for your benefit.
But today? It’s still hard. My poor man and I long to say yes to the other person, long to thrill each other with a yes, but can’t quite release what worries us from the other position. So we hug, and pray, and hope that time helps.
What helps you those days? What system of decision-making do you and your loved ones employ?