Freedom always comes for a price

We, as Indians, do enjoy the freedom to do just about anything. You could spend your day doing anything you like – driving around to wherever you want, learning a new language, or making a catalogue of all the videos of dogs jumping the trampoline. You could be a baker, a blogger, or you could start a business making cup cakes.

This delicious freedom comes at a cost – the constant need to make choices. This would not be so bad if we were not as terrible as we are at making choices.

Surprisingly, the more choices we have, the more difficult it becomes for us to make a decision. Ask someone to choose a dress in one of three colours, and you would see that they will not face too much of a problem. But, ask them to choose any colour they can imagine and they could have the dress in that colour, you will see them ponder for hours.

When we are presented with infinite options, it is just not possible to pick out the best. Our fear of making a wrong choice will forbid us from making a choice at all. Also, we like decisions that are easy to make. This makes it very easy to manipulate us. If we are given two choices, we are prone to act against our best interests.

Impairing our freedom is the solution to making better choices. We have to make hard decisions that will restrict our ability to make dumb decisions later. We have to plan for our own weakness.

Satisfice

This solution works when we are faced with a decision that has infinite options. A satisficer looks for the first decision that satisfies his needs sufficiently. Of course, it always helps to know how you will reverse a decision. Although, you will rarely need to do that, it does free you from the fear of making a decision without any flaws.

Fewer choices

Steve Jobs wore the same outfit to work every day. Mark Zuckerberg does the same. Obama prefers only two colours of suits. Such routines, that do not require a lot of brain activity, ensures you mind is unencumbered for decisions that really matter.

Start with the most difficult and important things

Get the most important and difficult things done at the beginning of your day. Generally, our will power starts fading by lunch time. It is advisable to keep the fun stuff for later in the day, where choices become easier and they cannot harm you.

Turn off as many distractions as possible

The Internet in our pocket tends to be a bane when we are working. Keep your phone, email, and other distractions aside when you work. This will ensure that you don’t reach for them easily even if you try.

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