Life Advice Tester: Make Decisions In 60 SecondsTara Schuster
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Test 2: A Day at the Spa

The success at the restaurant emboldened me to try something riskier. My friend Alessandra suggested that if I was in the mood to make choices, I should go to The Olympic Spa in Los Angeles. Far from your run-of-the-mill relaxing experience, this was the Nickelodeon’s Guts of spas. A massive complex of soaks, steams, saunas and even a BBQ joint, Olympic Spa requires one to maneuver through decision obstacles. But should I go at all? Alessandra explained the place had one more perilous element; it was a completely naked zone. I’m not totally comfortable being naked in the privacy of my own body much less in front of strangers. With time on the clock dwindling I decided, “Okay, yes. I will go to naked town.”

When I arrived, the spa was bumping. The receptionist, in a hurried state, asked if I would like a treatment today. Here came the familiar inner monologue: “What if I spend too much money here and then I miss out on some sick new adventure down the road? What if I hate it here and want to leave but then feel trapped because I made an appointment.” And aren’t spas supposed to be relaxing? Was I already failing at “letting go”?” My anxiety would have to wait; there was no time for dithering. I chose to get the least expensive option on the menu as a hedge.  Whatever the Akasuri Scrub was, it was cheap enough that I wouldn’t hate myself if it was not the best choice I had ever made.

With a scrub on the calendar, I entered a collage of naked: every type of body and lady totally exposed. This was do or die. Would I join them? Snap choice: Yes. I dropped my towel and set off for my next task. To soak in the hot Mugwart Bath or to sit in the Jade Steam Sauna? To lie in the Himalayan Crystal room or to eat a little Bibimbap? There were too many things to do! I was panicking and time was running out. But I would not be defeated! With seconds to go I chose: it would be the Mugwart Bath, mostly because it sounded like something out of Harry Potter. Soaking in the hot, herbal bath with three older Korean ladies, I could barely think. The water was so hot that my thinking brain turned off and I just experienced. Sort of feeling like I would pass out, I had an “ah-ha” moment . I was in an amazing soupy bath now and if I were to calculate the value of my choice and the prospects for my next decision I would no longer be in the bath. I would be in some weird head-space of anxiety. And that sounded like no fun at all. If I had made the choice to be in the Mugwarth Bath then why not just commit to it fully and enjoy the moment? Sure, the Charcoal Sauna might be for the fabulous people with the fabulous lives and all of the answers. But I wasn’t missing out. Submerged in the murky stew, experiencing something that felt right in that moment, I no longer knew FOMO.

Results: Snap Decisions Help You Commit and Enjoy

After two weeks of living my life by making snap decisions, I’ve ended up saying, “yes” to more than I normally would have. “Yes” to the stationery covered in gold hearts, “yes” to an after hours exhibit at The Brooklyn Museum, “yes” to the large container of almond milk, but “no” to the vintage sequin belt. In following my therapist’s advice I’ve found that I’m more likely to get out of my comfort zone and less likely to waste my time with FOMO. Making snap decisions forced me to stop obsessing with what I could be doing and enjoy what I was doing.

Have life advice for me to try on? Let me know in the comments.



Featured image via Shutterstock

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  • Priscila Azeneth

    Do things you dread doing by doing them quickly. Because you know after you do them, you’ll be glad you did. It’s the adult thing to do. Don’t procrastinate, don’t pretend like someone else is going to come and do it for you. Just like ripping off a wax strip, just do it. Just clean the dishes after every meal, Wash your clothes before you have no clean socks,. exercise in the morning before work, try cooking at least once everyday.

    I went to an early Sunday Morning Cycling class. Cycling in general is brutal but at 8am on a Sunday, that’s torture. Oh and it was a 90 minute class. When we first get there, the Instructor yells out “the hardest part you already accomplished! YOU’RE HERE!”

    So just put yourself through the hardest part, which is the trying. Once you get out the pan to make an omelet, and you cut the vegetables, it won’t be that hard to whip up the eggs and add cheese.

    • Tara Schuster

      You’re so right Priscila.
      That first band-aid ripping moment is really the hardest (besides going for a 90 minute cycling class!). There is a Woody Allen quote I love that really speaks to that: “Eighty percent of success is showing up.” But it’s sometimes hard to work up to even that 80%! We all know it’s easier to leave the dirty dishes in the sink. Maybe cleaning a mug at a time, getting a little bit better at the laundry, maybe by taking baby steps we can learn how to show up fully. Thanks for sharing your insights!

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