Dealing with Indecisive People

Tips for Managing People Who Can’t Make Up Their Minds

Indecisive people are a frustrating part of life. Here are some tips for dealing with an indecisive person and helping them make up their minds already!

We have all had to deal with indecisive and difficult people at some point in our lives. Whether it be the manager who can’t decide on how to format a report, or a wife who can’t make a decision on whether you should go to Olive Garden or The Spaghetti Warehouse, indecisive people are a frustrating part of life. Here are some tips for how to deal with an indecisive person and help them make up their minds already!

Limit Their Options

When dealing with an indecisive person, you simply cannot offer them an unlimited list of options. You have to narrow down and limit their options to two or three choices; no more than four. If you allow them more than four options you will find yourself in for a very long day… maybe even longer.

Take Them to Task

Most of the time, an indecisive person will be the type that doesn’t really want to do anything physically. They just want to talk about things forever. So I find that one way to get indecisive people to make up their minds is to take them to task on their “visions.” Let them know exactly what they will have to do in order for certain choices before them to be carried out. This will also help narrow down the list of options because more than likely, once the indecisive person hears about all the work they will have to do in certain cases, they will be less thrilled about those options.

Clearly Outline the Benefits of Each Option

Sometimes indecisive people have a problem deciding because they are not able to process information well. They sometimes have a hard time deciding what are the pros and cons of a situation. Help them out. Give them specific reasons why each option would be ideal. Just two pros each will do. When you find that they are favoring one or two choices over the others, that’s when you hit them with the biggest “con” or downside of one of those two narrowed down choices. BAM. They will think about it for a few moments, and after a short while will probably choose the opposite option.

Wrap it Up

Now that you have gotten them to commit to one option, you have to wrap things up quickly. Do not allow them extra time to think about the decision they just made. Tell them: “Great, I will get this going.” Reassure them by saying things like “This will be great” or “I’m glad you made this choice,” and then leave the room to get things started.

Be Firm

The most important advice you can get when dealing with an indecisive person is to be firm with them. Don’t waiver like them or play into their dysfunction. They will start to think this is a fun game and you will end up going back and forth forever. So put your foot down, let them know that there is a firm timeline that you have to follow, and stick by your narrowed down options. One sign of weakness, and an indecisive person will have you tied up in knots.

Don’t think you’re alone if you frequently have to deal with indecisive people in your everyday life. They may seem impossible to work with at first, but if you implement these options, remain calm, and use your charm and wit to get things done, you will find success dealing with indecisive people.

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