There are many instances in life where it’s important to seek a second opinion. Most often we think of second opinions when we think of health decisions. A major surgery or treatment surely warrants a close examination of all possible options. And most people, even those who consider themselves “experts” in their field, would agree that they are just an opinion of one and others may have valuable insight and input that could quite literally save a life.
No matter what major decision you face right now, for you or a loved one, it’s important that you feel you have enough information to decide confidently. This could be moving to a new home, determining a course of medical care, hiring a professional caregiver, or working through a family matter. Below we share some key things to consider when going about navigating the process of seeking multiple opinions on an important issue.
Seek opinions strategically.
Opinions are great because they share alternate viewpoints and can shine a light on our blind spots. But they can also cause confusion and overwhelm quite quickly. Be strategic about the sources of your opinions and be sure to qualify the opinions you choose to trust. Even well-meaning friends and family members may not have the best opinions to offer because they lack experience with that particular issue, or have a close emotional tie. Consider where there could be bias or limitations to experience, and take all of this with a grain of salt when considering multiple opinions.
Find the balance between not enough and too much information.
How many opinions are too many? This is the golden question! There’s no one right answer, but rather you need to consider what’s best for your specific situation. If you are easily overwhelmed by information, you may want to limit the opinions you seek. Two may be all you need to feel confident that you are making a sound decision. Alternately, following just one opinion, without seeking another, may not be enough information to guide the best choice. Like most things in life, it’s a balance. While more information may be helpful, it can also be contradictory and confusing. Often, we need just enough outside perspective to reinforce that our gut instinct and intuition is correct.
Have an end goal in mind.
What do you hope to achieve by getting more than one opinion? Are you looking for alternative options that are different from one another, or do you want reinforcement that one, single option is the best choice? It’s important to know what you hope to achieve so you can remain focused on what you started down the path of seeking multiple opinions to begin with. More information is only good if you know what to do with it. You don’t want to put the time and effort into collecting it if you’re not sure it’s valuable to you. Identify your goal and stick to it!
Set boundaries and priorities.
And finally, set boundaries and priorities for the key steps in your decision-making process. You may find that your decision is time-sensitive. If this is the case, you don’t want to get hung up on seeking multiple opinions that could cost you weeks, even months of time and then lead to additional confusion that puts you essentially back where you started. Work backward from your deadline for a decision. Seek additional opinions, but if they jeopardize this deadline, consider what needs to give. Are you willing to be flexible you’re your decision-making timeline or do you need to move forward without this additional perspective? Your priorities will help you make the right decision.
If you face a major decision that warrants multiple opinions, consider the advice shared here as you move through the process. Do seek insight from multiple parties, if you feel it will be helpful, but don’t let it derail your decision-making process, especially if it is time-sensitive.
And if Ella Home Care can help offer an opinion on professional in-home caregiving, we’re here to help! Reach out to us today for helpful advice that is backed by extensive experience.