31 Jan How To Make Perfect Decisions
How To Make Perfect Decisions
Jan. 31, 2020
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We live in the Era of Sadness Machines (aka smartphones), and it’s getting harder and harder to make decisions.
If it’s not the fear of missing out, it’s the fear of what other people will think.
What if I choose the wrong thing?
The only thing we have to fear…is other people judging us.
But there’s a solution to this problem. And it works every time.
When faced with a decision, consider it through this lens:
Will it make my day-to-day life significantly better?
Let’s try a few examples to see if it works.
Decision #1: Should I buy a new coffee maker?
Dilemma: It costs money and I’ll have to buy supplies. And I could keep going to Starbucks every day.
What improves my day-to-day existence? Going to Starbucks every day is a hassle. And expensive. If I get a coffee maker, I get delicious coffee every day and 20 more minutes of my morning becomes available. Plus, I save money.
Solution? A coffee maker makes every day less stressful and easier to organize.
Decision #2: Should I buy a new Ferrari?
Dilemma: I’d look so good in front of my friends and I could have good pictures to brag about. But it’s very expensive.
What improves my day-to-day existence? I live in a climate that has seasons, so I won’t be able to drive the Ferrari around for about half the year. And it’s mostly too cold to have the top down. And it’s so expensive I’d have to cut back.
Solution? Not getting the car improves my day-to-day. I wouldn’t be able to drive it enough to feel the benefit and my daily life would downgrade due to all the money I had to spend on the car.
Decision #3: Should I quit my job? Part I
Dilemma: My boss is causing me tremendous amounts of stress. I don’t like the work. But then I would be unemployed and family and friends would criticize me.
What improves my day-to-day existence? Not having the daily stress of the job would be an immense improvement. My health and happiness would immediately get an indefinite boost. Plus, I’ve saved my money so I could go several months before money became an issue.
Solution? Quit the job. Waking up every day would be improved and the serenity would allow for clear-headed analysis in finding my next job. Other people might criticize me but, aside from that 2 minutes of their complaining, the next 23 hours and 58 minutes would be blissful.
Decision #4: Should I quit my job? Part II
Dilemma: I don’t really like my job. It’s boring and the people I work with aren’t A-listers. I feel like I should choose something else, follow my passion. But I’ve spent a lot of money so I don’t have much saved.
What improves my day-to-day existence? Quitting the job might have very temporary happiness but the day-to-day would suddenly become stressful. Not having savings and not having a job would be stressful all day long
Solution? Keep the job. Nothing on a daily basis is improved by quitting. I’d be stressful all day. I’d have to find new jobs and then do a bunch of stressful interviews. And I’d be desperate during those interviews, which doesn’t usually work well. Plus, my budget would force me to live very frugally. Keeping the job is annoying at times, but it allows me live comfortably while looking for something I like better.
Daily life is really all we can control. We don’t know the long-term ramifications of anything.
If we constantly strive to make today better with every decision, today will be pretty darn good.
And tomorrow will be, too.
My book is called The Inevitability of Becoming Rich, and you can find that here.