There are moments in life where you are faced with what feels like a life altering choice to make.

Perhaps you have two different job offers sitting in front of you. One is low paid but you’ll be doing something you love or something very rewarding, the other is better money but will be a soul-crushing slog each day.

Perhaps you have to take a side in an argument between two friends or family members, knowing that whoever you pick, the other will fall out with you.

Perhaps you simply have to decide whether to stand up for what you believe in or not, knowing there could be huge ramifications either way.

I had to make a choice like this when I was about nine years old. I was at the Blochairn car boot sale with my granny and granda.

We were standing in front of two motors. One of them had a dartboard for sale, complete with cabinet, darts and even chalk to write your scores, all for the bargain price of a fiver.

The other had a bike for the same price. A red and green one, styled to look like a dirt bike, a bit scratched and rusty looking but undeniably cool.

I desperately wanted both but was informed that not only would that be too much money, there was also only room in the motor for one or the other.

Both sellers tried to sway me to buy their product. ‘You and yer da could play darts thegither, wee man,’ said one, trying to flatter my granda at the same time as convincing me of the merits of the dartboard. ‘Aw yer pals will be jealous ae this,’ said the bike seller. ‘Here, take it for a wee shot.’

My granny saw that this was frying my wee brain and pulled me aside, away from their dubious sales tactics. ‘A bike for a fiver is a better deal than a dartboard for that price,’ said my granny.

I looked over longingly at the bike. ‘But I’ve always wanted a dartboard,’ I said. ‘Naw, ye’ve no. Ye’ve never mentioned darts before but ye said ye wanted a new bike last week.’

This was true. ‘I don’t know,’ I said. ‘I cannae decide.’

In the end, I went for the dartboard to the delight of my granda and dismay of my granny and my maw.

To this day, the wall of my childhood bedroom bears the scars of my awful throws. Pockmarked with tiny holes that simply won’t allow themselves to be concealed by paint. It was a terrible decision but one that I believe altered the course of my life completely.

Because I got the dartboard, I became a bit of a hermit as a wee guy.

Before this, I was always out playing fitbaw, climbing things and exploring like your average wee guy.

After the dartboard, everything changed. I dedicated my life to the oche.

The soft thunk of the darts nestling into the bristles after their short but glorious flight through the air was music to my ears. Over the next few weeks, I became what would be termed ‘half-decent’ at the game.

My skills at arithmetic approved as well and led me to being moved up a set in maths at school.

This gave me a confidence boost and I started doing better all round in education.

Another few weeks passed and my granda said he’d take me to the car boot sale again as a reward for doing so well.

Maybe, I thought, there’d be someone selling better darts I could get.

Instead, someone was selling a set of horror books for weans that grabbed my attention immediately.

This got me really into reading, I put down my darts for the final time, and now, decades later, I write for a living.

But what if I’d chosen the bike on that fateful day instead? Maybe I’d now be a lycra-clad menace on the roads.

It may not have made much difference to how my life has turned out in the grand scheme of things, but I like to think it would have. I’m a big believer in everything happening for a reason and synchronicity and all that. I like unspooling the thread of my life and looking back over all the things that had to happen, all the decisions I had to make, to get me to a certain point.

I know this maybe sounds like a load of mince, but whenever you’re faced with a decision to make from now on, I’d encourage you to just let the options sit with you for a wee bit longer than you normally would.

Let your mind come up with fantastical paths that each choice could take you down and make your choice based on that. See what happens.