How long do you spend researching the perfect holiday? Probably longer at the moment while we’re all locked down with nothing else to do! Or that next pair of trainers… or the posh coffee machine you’ve wanted for ages? If you’ve bought a house, how long did it take for you to decide to put an offer? Was the time spent on research proportional for those purchases? Did you use any decision-making tool, or explicit process? Or did you just orientate to the market for a while, a bit of online research, and then when you found something that ticked enough boxes… BANG!
Well, that’s my story at least. The single biggest purchase I’m likely to make in my life was boiled down to this internal monologue:
“It’s just about affordable, we know it’s in the rough area we might want, and I can’t see anything wrong with it… can you?”
I’ve spent infinitely longer researching, deciding, changing my mind, seeking advice, deciding again, and picking the last set of golf clubs I bought. Seriously.
Research suggests we all make anything upwards of 30,000 decisions every single day. From the gargantuan to the almost invisible and inconsequential. Of course, most of these we are completely unaware of and it all gets taken care of by the sub-conscious.
I believe that means most of us have potential for big improvements… and that could lead to huge upsides. Finding a tool or a strategy to make decisions that works for you is where to start, and improving your ability to make more of the consequential decisions consciously is where you want to get to.
Less of “why did I choose to do that?” type scenario (we end up being our own victim… can you see?) and more of “I chose to do that” scenario… for good or ill of course.
Improving the quality of your decision making, and your ability to own your choices is one of the most powerful ways to take ownership of your life and mental state.
I think we could all do with feeling a bit more in control these days.
Go deeper into this topic at our free-to-attend session on Decision-making and Risk-taking on Friday 26th February at 2pm GMT as part of PlayBook Week.