My Daughter is a Waffler

Dear Rhonda and Dr. Cheri,

My husband and I brought up our four kids on a farm. We did everything.

My husband made all the decisions about who was doing what chore. He was a Marine drill sergeant, yelling from 4am until sundown every day, which explains our three boys going into the military.

I left my husband and took our 16 year-old daughter to the suburbs. Her dad wanted her to go into the military, too. She waffled for a year and then said “no.” He won’t contact her now.

She’s talented at sculpting, cooking, and debating on the school’s debate team.

But she can’t choose a dress by herself. She’s indecisive about everything.

No one knows what she really thinks. 


Mom of a waffling girl

Dear Mom,

We all struggle with major decisions. However, when big and small judgments teeter on the fence, decisions will crash by chance and not by choice.

It’s imperative to have decision-making methodologies. They influence and affect life-long choices for our families and people that benefit from our best talents.

Only thinking about how decisions will affect us, or trying to people-please, can cause big mistakes. We risk great failures without using decision-making strategies.

We’re a society that depends on critical thinkers, creative innovators, and decisive motivators, and most of all, people who have unwavering values like honesty, forgiveness, integrity, and gratitude.

To make value-based decisions:

  • Choose ahead of time what decisions you won’t compromise on and commit yourself to your values.
  • Make honest lists of pros and cons.
  • Don’t compare yourself to anyone else.
  • Choose from your three best value-based talents and visualize what life would be like with each.
  • Once you’ve made a decision, take actions.
  • Give yourself a short time limit (six months) and then a longer limit (one year … based only on how you’ve progressed within the short-term limit). Be honest with yourself.
  • There’s no shame in changing your decision. If you, your boyfriend, and your mom are the only ones congratulating your culinary arts ability – face the fact, being a chef isn’t your best talent.


If the talent you love most isn’t producing your best life, financially, emotionally, physically, and spiritually, you’ve chosen a hobby and not your best talent. Watching a 70-year-old still trying to make it as an actor is painful.

The goal for making the best decision for you is:

  1. Are you and your family prospering by using your best talent?
  2. Are you making a positive difference in the lives of others?


Rhonda and Dr. Cheri