Aging Well in the Gorge September 29th 2021

We’re faced with dozens of decisions all day long. Most of the choices we need to make are no big deal: Which hat should I wear? Do I eat the whole pint of ice cream or not? Should I visit the bathroom before I leave for the store? Do I sit someplace else or move the cat? What should I write about? 

But there are times when there are major decisions you need to make: Should we sell the house and move to a small rentalShould I retire or find a part-time job? Do I finally need inhome care that I have been refusing for so longShould I change my Medicare plan during Open enrollment in October? 


In his web post, “Keys to Making a Good Decision”, Z. Hereford offers a sevenstep process for making any important decision. 


1.) Identify the decision to be made as well as what you want to achieve. 


2.) Do your homework. Gather as many facts and as much information you can to assess your options. 


3.) Brainstorm and come up with several possible choices. Determine if the options are compatible with your values, interests, and abilities. 


4.) Weigh the probabilities or possible outcomes. In other words, what’s the worst that can happen? What will happen if I do A, B or C and can I live with the consequences? 


5.) Make a list of the pros and cons. Prioritize which considerations are very important to you and which are less so.  


6.) Solicit opinions and obtain feedback from those you trust or someone who has experienced a similar situation.  


7.) Make the decision and monitor your results. Make sure you are achieving what you want. 


While working through this decisionmaking process, you may also want to consider the following points.  


1.) Don’t get caught up in your emotions. I’ve found this to be easier said than done. 

2.) Avoid choosing something you’ve already invested in when it’s not the best option. Don’t keep throwing “good money after bad” or what psychologists call “the sunk cost bias”. 


3.) Get a good night’s sleepWe tend to make more accurate decisions in the morning. 


4.) Don’t get stuck and do nothing for fear that you don’t know enough (found I never know enough!). Othe fear you will make the wrong choice. As Yogi Berra once said, “When you come to a folk in the road, take it.” 


5.) Sometimes good enough is the best decision. Older adults generally worry less about whether they made the optimal decision which could be one reason older adults are happier than younger adults. 


6.) Don’t beat yourself up if you make the wrong decisions – let the chips fall where they may. At the very least, you will have learned important lessons. 


That’s a lot to digestBut when you have to make a significant decisionthese suggestions can help you make the wisest and most satisfying decision with the information you have. Now, let’s see. Which hat should I wear?  


The singer and ukulele player best remembered for his hit “Tiptoe Through the Tulips” and who married Miss Vicki on The Tonight Show was Tiny Tim. I received correct answers from Emmett Sampson, Michelle Hines, Donnie Bergstrom, Susan Ellis, Stephen Woolpert, Joanne Keith, Billie Maxwell, Lana Tepfer, Norma Sampson, Richard Shaw, Jay Waterbury, Gene Uczen, Kim Birge, Keith Blaster, Doug Nelson, Rhonda Spies, Patty Burnet, Barbara Young, and Eva Bryant this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket. Last week I missed Carolyn Burns.  


I don’t remember receiving or giving this sign of affection back in high school, but they would often inspire quite the chatter in the hallwaysFor this week’s “Remember When” question, what was the name for a bruise created by someone sucking on your skin so hard that it becomes discolored? E-mail your answer to, call 541-296-4788 or send it with a copy of the June 25, 2021, Cleveland Clinic web post about how to get rid of one – in case you need to know! 


Well, it’s been another week enjoying seeing the stars in the sky before bedtime. Until we meet again, someone has to be the first to say, “I’m sorry.”  


“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about dancing in the rain.” Vivian Greene 

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