Should I Stay or Should I Go?

02 September 2022 | 5 min read


The art of making big and small decisions.

Should I do this or should I do that? The question is actually simple and straightforward, and yet, it gives us headaches sometimes.

We all know this question, and we all had it at some point in our professional or personal lives. A job decision, a relationship, a decision about a place, an investment, a call, a project. Should I go right or should i go left? Should I stay or should I go? Should I say this or should I say that?

What we often don´t notice is that we actually answer these kind of questions without thinking all day long. Unconsciously. We do something, or we don’t. Simple. We stay somewhere, or stand up and leave, and that´s a decision. No thinking. It just happens. It’s what we do all the time. We call someone or we don’t. We eat this or that. We only notice afterwards that it was a decision. Or we don´t even notice that we just took a decision.

So why do we get stuck sometimes with some decisions?

I´ll share an experience. Maybe that will help see more clearly what happens. I remember a personal situation I had some times ago. It´s about a network I was involved with. I had been asking myself this question for a while: “Should I stay in this group and get involved more, or should I leave?”.

The group and project had consumed my time and part of my mental energy for a while, and still, I couldn´t let go. I didn´t feel alignment inside me. It was exhausting and time to find inner clarity about why I did what I did, in order to make a decision about whether to stay fully or to leave.

I asked the group if we could meet and talk. I noticed that some in the group were relieved; they also had similar questions. We met over the weekend, and I was open about the outcome. I didn´t know what the outcome would be. I really didn´t know.

Then came the meeting that took place the coming weekend. It was Friday afternoon. We introduced ourselves more in-depth to understand each other even better. We talked about the purpose of being together, put all our expectations and thoughts on the table; we started working. Then dinner, and I still didn’t know what to do. We chatted and enjoyed ourselves.

Saturday morning, we went deeper and deeper into defining the joint project, adjusted the vision step by step together. Sometimes it went smoothly, sometimes we discussed endlessly but then moved again.

All good so far, but the question was still open. Should I stay, or should I go?

All the pros and cons arguments my head created before we met felt somehow artificial and didn’t help make a decision. I still didn’t know what to do.

While we were talking, the advantages of staying were confirmed, and the disadvantages as well. No way I could make a decision based on this logic. I could still not decide. Something in me didn’t let me make a decision. I felt I couldn’t move. I waited.

We went for lunch, chatting all the way, found our table in a busy and noisy food mall that we chose because the location was convenient. We started eating, and then, after a while, there was a moment of quiet, a relaxing break. I enjoyed this moment of not having to talk.

And suddenly, ignoring the noise around me, my head got still. I looked around the table, I felt calm. Nothing was happening in my mind. Suddenly the answer showed itself. I knew, it would be the last time we would be sitting like that together. The thought came unexpected.

The atmosphere of the group was enjoyable, pushy, straightforward, respectful. I liked it and liked the people. All are very smart and successful in their unique way. I understood why we came together and what we wanted to reach. I felt that what we wanted to achieve would work because it generally made total sense, and there was a common willingness to succeed. And still…

I didn’t know what the outcome would be when I came to this place. The meeting was a turning point about committing fully or leaving. We came all the way to get more clarity, and we got what we wanted: clarity.

I enjoyed being there, was flattered and intellectually stimulated; the reasons for staying were powerful, but, in this quiet moment, I saw that I didn’t belong there. Without being able to explain it, I knew that our journey together would end here, and that my personal journey would lead me elsewhere. It was not rational -just a feeling.

If I had listened to my intellect and ego, it would have been misleading and probably created a lot of mess for myself and the group that was becoming a team. Luckily I didn’t.

If it’s complicated, it is the intellect. If it is simple, it is the spirit. Sydney Banks

Should I stay or should I go is a question we often have to answer in our lives. Personally or professionally. We think the answer has to do with the possible consequences of the decision we make, that it is the reason why we hesitate, because we project ourselves in the future and think of the consequences. But it is not true. When our decision is clear and clean inside, we always find a way to deal with the consequences. It is not the reason we hesitate so much.

The real reason why we get stuck is that our intellect confuses us with overthinking. We just think too much.

Looking back at my life, I remember that it was always in those quiet moments (sometimes only for a few seconds) that I made the most critical and best decisions. Not through overthinking, but in these moments in between the chaos of my thoughts that i knew what to do, that I found the answers I was looking for.

It was in a chemistry class, I was 16, testing some mixtures. The room was noisy and smelly, I remember how it felt, and how it smelled. A thought, what am I doing here? I was calm. It was very strange. Both were in me, the question and the calmness. The class ended, I found my way to the office of the headmaster. I had never been there before. I asked if I could speak to him. Was usually not that confident. He let me in. I sat down and told him I wanted to change the class. I didn´t want to focus on maths, physics and chemistry any more. He was surprised, in his eyes it was a privilege I was giving up. He warned me about the long term consequences of this decision. I knew I would be ok. I am ok.

At 18, I hesitated for months between studying business administration and studying psychology. One day I just went to the faculty for psychology and picked up the application form. I never regretted it.

I did it the same way when I moved to Germany. Should I stay in Paris or should I go? I decided to leave. I did it again when I changed the company and moved to Munich, and later when I left my HR job to start my own business. I did it with relationships, with friendships, with medical decisions. In a moment. All the thinking didn’t help. The quiet moment did.

At that time, I had no idea that it was wisdom in action, that I was following a more profound knowing.

The answers that give us peace seldom come from our intellect or our ego; they come from a magic place in us that knows so much about us and life, and would be able to guide us smoothly through life if only we looked in this direction more often. If only we let it.

Sometimes we don’t trust what we already know.

Sometimes the consequences we fear look very big in our heads, but they are not the reality. Nobody knows the future. Sometimes, we think we will not be able to deal with the consequences of our decisions, but the fears we create in us are all made of thoughts. All made up in our minds.

When we get grounded and trust our deeper knowing, wisdom, intuition, gut feeling, or whatever we want to call it, life becomes so much easier. We stay, or we go. We say yes, or we say no. We decide, or we don´t, until we know.

With love,


Drissia Schroeder-Hohenwarth is a Psychologist and a Transformative Coach for Leaders, Teams, and Organisations with a fascination for the endless potential of the mind.

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Written by Drissia Schroeder-Hohenwarth

Transformative Coach for Leaders, Teams and Organisations with a fascination for the endless potential of the mind.

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