Death by Planning: Paralysis of certainty

methods productivity awareness self-knowledge
Reflections and drafts

Analysis paralysis - have you heard of this one? I'm sure of one thing: maybe you haven't heard about it before, but you've definitely experienced it.

Remember when you went to the store to buy a gift for your friend and your head went blank when you saw all the possible choices? Or exams and surveys in which you ended up choosing none of the seventeen possible answers?

I experienced this yesterday when I went to buy new shoes. Unfortunately, I didn't buy them again - as always.

And yes, it was all thanks to assurance paralysis. Analysis paralysis).

Plenty of options

One of the biggest problems in our lives is that we have too big choice. Yes, as strange as it sounds, the abundance of options scares us, confuses and just plain annoys us.

You don't have to look far for examples of this: go to Maxima when you buy, say, a baguette or bread. But no, not always the same, but somehow different. Try to make the bread very, very tasty and at the same time cheap, well, because you want it after all the best choose

Look around: how many types of bread and baguette do you see around you? If the war did not suddenly start in Lithuania, it is likely that there are more options around than anyone who might need them.

Do you feel the rising irritation and the desire to give up and just choose the option with the inscription "discount"?

Lo and behold, I didn't even think about it, and at that time one of the modern sociologists has been talking about the headache caused by choices for several decades. theory psychologist Barry Schwartz!

(More: Barry Schwartz: The paradox of choice).

Benefit assessment

The second step in choosing the best option is benefit assessment.

This is probably the most difficult period. The questions of what is good and what is better come to mind every moment. Unfortunately, this is the longest and least useful part.

Very often in sports and games it happens that players or athletes do not focus on the implementation of the task, but on the plan how to complete that task.

While it's not too bad to have some sort of plan, everything has its limits. I'm sure you've encountered such people: they think and plan so much that you want to shoot yourself.

I'm not sure why exactly we try to make the best of everything, but somehow I have a feeling it might come from the simplest fear of making a bad decision, anxiety.


The third part of this suffering is choice. Or not.

I have already noticed that often when analysis paralysis hits me, I don't choose nothing. Yes, absolutely nothing.

And that's the problem: without an option, not even the option of giving it all to hell, I'm not moving forward. I can spend a long time reading about clothes online, but when I go to the store, I usually have everything in a matter of minutes.

The problem is that there is a choice necessary. There is probably no big difference in what you choose, everything has its pros and cons. But knowing what you will definitely do and what you will definitely, definitely never do is always useful. This way you always know that you can simply reject at least some of the possibilities, simply reduce.

I still don't know how I'm going to deal with certainty and choice paralysis. So I ask you:

How do you choose the best option from an infinite number of options? How do you make that choice?

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