How to make better decisions

27 Mar 2023

Smart people are way too preoccupied with doing the right things. They want to have a perfect life, career, house, business, car, holiday, etc. When you put too much pressure on yourself to make the right decisions, you get analysis paralysis. The solution? Do these two things:

Avoid overthinking — When you overanalyze every single decision, you become paralyzed. Result? Nothing. Also, overthinking leads to mental fatigue. And when you’re brain is tired, it tends to make poorer decisions.
Make small decisions. And decide often — When I had trouble with my newsletter provider years ago, I didn’t change to a different one immediately. That’s because I had a smaller list. Then my list grew and the problem of changing providers became even harder. So don’t put off decisions.
Remember that not making a decision is also a decision. If that’s a conscious move, to have more time to think, that’s okay. But don’t fall into the trap of putting off decisions for too long that the stakes get higher.

Focus on the process, not the outcome
When we make decisions, we often ask, “What will happen if we make this decision?” But that’s not necessarily the best method. Because it focuses too much on the outcome. And outcomes aren’t fully in our control. Peter Bevelin, the author of Seeking Wisdom, puts it well:

“Good decisions can lead to bad outcomes and vice versa.”

You can’t predict the future. Sometimes even bad decisions can lead to good outcomes. So instead, try using mental models to improve your decision-making process. If you can trust that your process leads to your goals, then you won’t have to worry about things you can’t control.

Ask yourself these 6 questions
I found a list of six thought-provoking questions in Annie Duke’s book, Thinking In Bets. Notice what the theme is.

Why might my belief not be true?
What other evidence might be out there bearing on my belief?
Are there similar areas I can look toward to gauge whether similar beliefs to mine are true?
What sources of information could I have missed or minimized on the way to reaching my belief?
What are the reasons someone else could have a different belief, what’s their support, and why might they be right instead of me?
What other perspectives are there as to why things turned out the way they did?
The reason I like these questions from Annie Duke is that they force you to think about what you can’t know. In my experience, that’s what drastically improves your decisions.

Apply the 20/80 rule of effective thinking
Decision-making involves a lot of thinking. But purely thinking and not doing won’t lead anywhere. So it’s important to have a balance.

I live by a 20/80 ratio. 20% thinking, 80% doing. Not everyone has to use this ratio. It all depends on what you do, and who you are. For example, Warren Buffet is famous for spending around 5 hours each day, reading. That’s his “thinking time.” And the rest of the day, he executes.

Some people love to read and talk about ideas. Others prefer to get right down into action. The important thing is to have a balance of thinking and doing that suits your personality and goals.

Write & Read to Earn with BULB

Learn More

Enjoy this blog? Subscribe to RCB Lovers😍

1 Comment

We all make decisions every day unconsciously and consciously and agree with the point we could become paralysed by a lack of a decision. Any idea how many decisions we make in a day?