It’s Decision Time Again

Making decisions is one of the most fundamental activities in our lives. Decisions and their consequences are unavoidable. Even when we avoid making a decision, the choice to avoid it is a decision in its own right and carries consequences just like any other decision. There is no escape!

Having choices is part of what defines freedom and gives us a great deal of joy.  I don't know too many people who consciously give up their free will.  (I do know some who unconsciously do, but that's a story for another day.) So why do so many people struggle to make decisions?

We all have our favorite way to deal with decision overload. Mine is procrastination. And I always feel bad about it, and I always thing there must be something wrong with me. (And there probably is, but that is between me and my therapist.)

All of this felt a bit better the other day when I found this article in the New York Times.

It turns out I’m plagued by too many decisions – which I recognize is a luxury of excessive use of free will. (And I really do mean that it’s a luxury to have the opportunity to choose so much of my own circumstances) This phenomenon even has a name, Decision Fatigue. And it’s not just me, and it’s not my fault, and just considering that I could limit the unimportant decisions in order to improve the important ones is really helpful.

After reading the article, I decided to stop visiting the World Wide Web unless I have a specific task to perform there. No more browsing, no more surfing. I think this alone will eliminate dozens if not hundreds of unimportant decisions from my daily roster. And it will free up time to walk barefoot in the grass, sit in meditation, and talk to friends that I treasure dearly but never call or visit anymore!

What will you eliminate? How will you free up your mental space for those important decisions that really matter? I can’t wait to hear about it!

About the Author

Jen Eramith


  1. October 23, 2011 at 04:03

    I had this revelation of "choice" equals "stress" when I was visiting a small town in Costa Rica for a week and went grocery shopping in the only food store in town. The choices were so limited that it took me a couple of minutes standing in the same spot to load up on my groceries for the week. Wow, I thought, that was not stressful AT ALL and I pictured the aisles and aisles of choices in my town in the US and and understood why I didn't enjoy grocery shopping at the mega-store. There were too many decisions to make!