How to Make Better Decisions

All of us have to make decisions every day – what to buy, what to have for dinner, or what TV show to watch. Other times, we have to make bigger decisions – whether to report to work, what to wear for a first date, or whether to tell a friend you lied to her. Not a few of us freeze when we are confronted with such decisions because we dread making the wrong one.

However, with the right approach to making decisions, even the most difficult calls can be made with ease. Here are some tips that should make you better at decision making.

Take your time and make an educated decision

Take your time when making an important decision. A study conducted by the researchers at the University of New South Wales revealed that a careful and rational deliberation often results in better decisions more than following your gut. It really pays to review and weigh all significant information before making a choice (an educated one) instead of making an easycall.

Less is more, so limit your choices

A study by professor Sheena Iyengar from the Columbia University found that shoppers at a food shop were more likely to get a jar of jam when they were offered fewer flavors. In order to avoid "choice overload" in decision making, you should limit your options by grouping them according to shared characteristics.

If you are contemplating about quitting your job and looking for another one, you need to group your prospects as "part-time" or "full-time." Once you have chosen, make a decision whether you want a home job or one that requires you to report to the office. Continue limiting your options until you have just few choices left.

Do the math

Are you having a hard time deciding whether to move to a smaller place in the city or keep your larger apartment in the suburbs? List down the pros and cons of each option and assign each item a value according to importance. What is your biggest concern? Rent? Square footage? Proximity to establishments like shops and restaurants? Sum up the values and then see which column yields a larger value.

Move on

After you have made your decision, do not look back. Stand by your decision and make it work. Do not waste your time wondering how things might have been different if you had chosen the other option. You have to decide to decide, and decide to make your decision work.