Fear can paralyze you. But what about fear is it that causes you to freeze, unsure about your next move.
Is it fear of the unknown, fear of making the wrong decision, or fear of not being able to properly manage a situation?
Some people are better decision makers than others.
Everyone wants to make a good decision, but some people put more CPU time and energy into deciding, while others seem to intuitively know what the best answer is.
Sometimes there is very little time to analyze, but analyze you must… just don’t spend so much time thinking that you end up doing nothing. This indecision is sometimes called “analysis paralysis.”
Sometimes making any decision is better than not deciding at all. This is because once a decision is made, you can see how the world reacts, and then adjust your plans accordingly.
WWII General George S. Patton said, “I would rather have a good plan today than a perfect plan two weeks from now.” Said another way, you have to go with what you know, now.
It is impossible to know every possible consequence of every possible situation. So analyze the facts at hand and make the best possible decision that you can now.
One way of doing this is to look at preexisting patterns and interpolate how they may affect the future. While this is helpful, remember past performance (on the chess board and in the market) is not a guarantee of future returns. Read more about that here.
So when you feel stuck, look at your possibilities, look for patterns and make a decision. Decisiveness is a characteristic of both good chess players and successful investors.