Making decisions is hard—ask any three-year-old in a Baskin Robbins. But even as you get older and you get better at making decisions, some choices seem to be harder to make than others. (Ask any 30-year-old in a Baskin Robbins.)
To help you navigate life, we've found the weirdest (and creepily helpful) ways to figure out what to do. Because Noah Calhoun is just SO right, you guys.
I got this one from Christine Hassler, life coach, at a T.J. Maxx event focused on maximizing (hah, get it?) the decisions you make that matter to you most. Not gonna lie, I was skeptical—but it actually worked.
Here's how it goes: List each possible choice you could make and the potential outcome of that choice on a separate piece of paper, then...
Another one I learned from Hassler. This one's tricky, since it's kind of self-fulfilling, but you can try it out on friends who are having a hard time deciding something and become their favorite person. Basically, you have your friend think about or say each choice, and see which way they lean. Have them stand normally, with feet slightly together, and close their eyes. For example, if the choice was what to eat for breakfast, you can have them say each choice. "I'm going to eat eggs," then, "I'm going to eat pancakes." If they leaned in (i.e. if their body moved forward) that's a good sign. If they leaned back, it generally means their intuition is against that choice. Either way, fun party trick, amirite?
We tend to feel more emotions (i.e. aren't as objective) in bright light. So dim those lights and think about your decisions.
Decision fatigue is a real thing, and it changes how you choose (and what you choose) after you've already made choices throughout the day. Yes, even the mundane ones. The worst part—you're not even aware that you're mentally drained. So make those big decisions in the morning. Our recommendation? Do it before you've even picked an outfit.
A 2009 study found that those who listened to faster music made better and more accurate decisions when it came to hard decisions than those who listened to slower music. Time to cue up your Spotify. (Or if you're Jay Z, your Tidal.)
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Samantha Leal is the Deputy Editor at Well+Good, where she spends most of her day thinking of new ideas across platforms, bringing on new writers, overseeing the day-to-day of the website, and working with the awesome team to produce the best stories and packages. Before W+G, she was the Senior Web Editor for Marie Claire and the Deputy Editor for Latina.com, with bylines all over the internet. Graduating from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University with a minor in African history, she’s written everything from travel guides to political op-eds to wine explainers (currently enrolled in the WSET program) to celebrity profiles. Find her online pretty much everywhere @samanthajoleal.
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