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Regret Minimization Framework - AgileLeanLife
Sometimes you have to make hard decisions in life. Maybe you have to decide whether you should quit your job and start your own business, end a relationship or maybe move to another country. Big decisions like that are the ones you have to make completely by yourself.

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Jeff Bezos

"We are stubborn on vision. We are flexible on details ". 

Jeff Bezos

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Jeff Bezos's Regret-minimization framework

Jeff Bezos's Regret-minimization framework
Project yourself forward to the age of 80. Looking back on your life, you want to minimize the number of regrets. 

Thinking about your potential regrets give you clarity. It al...

10/10/10 Rule

Before making a decision, considers how you’ll feel about this decision in 10 minutes, 10 months, and 10 years.

It’s easy to make short-term decisions that may be beneficial 10 minutes...

Pareto’s Law

In anything we do, there’s always ~20% of activities that will deliver 80% of our desired results.

It’s easy to be wrapped up in ‘busy’ work without ever getting anything done. Pareto’s Law is a useful mental model to be more effective, rather than just be efficient.

Parkinson’s Law

Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion. So try placing artificial time limitations.

If we’re given three hours to complete a task that normally would take an hour, we’ll find a way to fill those three hours. However, when we’re down to the final thirty minutes, we’re suddenly feeling the pressure to get things done. 

Quit When...

  • You're consistently experiencing more frustration than reward.
  • You can't envision a possible solution or continuing this way.
  • Spending time on this keeps you from more rewardin...

Before You Call It Quits

  • Make sure you've identified the real causes of your unhappiness. Keep a diary of events and problems.
  • Give it a chance. Many things, like diets, require time to work out.
  • Try many other solutions.
  • Have a backup plan. Know what you're going to do if you quit and what you need to do to prepare for that.

Our emotions are short-term biased

Our emotions are obsessed with the present moment because it’s difficult to look past our immediate fears and anxieties. And this prevents good decision-making.

The sweet spot in de...

“Risky” behavior you should consider

  • Propose “moonshot” ideas, knowing that 90% of them will get shot down, but that if one of them gets accepted, it will be a huge boost to your career.
  • Be excessively bold in your dating life, stating exactly who and what you want.
  • Buy difficult books expecting that most of them won’t be useful to you, but also that, occasionally, one will completely change your life.
  • Say yes to every invitation knowing that most of the events/people will be boring, but that occasionally you’ll meet someone really interesting.

Optimizing life for fewer regrets

Most of us are afraid of messing thing up. But we rarely ask, “Would I regret that failure?” If the answer is “no,” then that is absolutely a risk you should pursue.

Sometimes, the right decision becomes crystal clear when put into these terms.

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Turn regret into motivation

  1. Acknowledge how you cope with regret: ignoring it makes it more present;
  2. Stop the regrets spiral, until you are ready to face the situation with more clarity;
  3. Revisit the story...

The disease of "What if"

It’s human nature to linger on feelings of regret. We look back and think that missed opportunities(real or not) could have set us on a different, possibly more rewarding path. Unchecked, these emotions become overwhelming sources of stress and anxiety.

Turn regret into motivation

  • Acknowledge how you cope with regret: ignoring it makes it more present
  • Stop the regrets spiral, until you are ready to face the situation with more clarity
  • Revisit the story and identify practical lessons you can learn from it
  • Treat yourself like your ideal mentor would
  • Ask yourself why you feel regret and work backward to identify the values that are tied up in your feelings
  • The cure for anticipating regret isn’t feeling lousy or overthinking, but pursuing solutions, using the wisdom gained through self-reflection.

Data and how it frames your thinking

Data and how it frames your thinking

What’s more important than how much data you have is how it frames the way you think.

Some leader when they're under pressure to appear decisive, approach complex situa...

Thomas Bayes'd thought experiment

He wondered how he could predict the probability of a future event if he only knew how many times it had occurred, or not, in the past. Bayes figured out that even when it comes to uncertain outcomes, we can update our knowledge by incorporating new, relevant information as it becomes available.

His theorem describes the probability of an event, based on prior knowledge of conditions that might be related to the event.

Importance of using probabilistic thinking

Data can be imperfect, incomplete, or uncertain. Most of the time, there is more than one explanation for why things happened the way they did; by examining those alternative explanations using probability, you can gain a better understanding of causality and what is really going on.

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Fear born out of practicality

We sometimes give in to fear disguised as practicality.

Replace "I'd love to, but..." with "I'm going to, and...". The worst that can happen is most likely manageable ...

The "good enough" narrative

Don't settle for good enough, for the " I hate my job but it makes great money, I provide for my family and I can save for retirement".

Don't ignore the call for greatness, whatever greatness means to you.

Quieting your curiosity

Don't de-prioritize your curiosity. Never be satisfied that you know enough. 

Grow to think of curiosity as a value, a virtue.

Telling someone to never give up is terrible advice

Successful people give up all the time. If something is not working, smart people don’t repeat it endlessly. They revise. They adjust. They quit.

Just like the saying goes...

The 3 Stages of Failure

  1. Failure of Tactics - the HOW mistakes: failure to execute on a good plan and a clear vision.
  2. Failure of Strategy - the WHAT mistakes: when you follow a strategy that fails to deliver the results you want.
  3. Failure of Vision - the WHY mistakes: failing to understand why you do the things you do.

Fixing a Failure of Tactics

  1. Record your process.
  2. Measure your outcomes.
  3. Review and adjust your tactics.

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Overthinking

It  means overanalyzing something that happened, regretting an action, or worrying about the future of something. 

It's when you can't think about anything else, and it'...

Overthinking and action

If you're overthinking an idea you can actually do something about, the best thing you can do is take action now.

This doesn't mean you have to suddenly run off to make something, it just means you start taking a step forward. We tend to overthink because we fear failure, but if we just start working, that dissipates quickly

Break the circle of overthinking:

  • Relabel the ideas you're overthinking ("self-doubt," "anxiety," etc)
  • Reframe your experience and identify your thinking errors
  • Refocus your attention on the part that matters
  • Revalue your brain's messages with the new information

Reality Check

All efforts towards correctly pursuing your own personal development must take into account reality, not how you think the world should work. The truth is reality isn’t fair and just trying your...

Success Bias

Almost no popular self-help authors are going to have had the experience of pursuing a dream (like becoming an author) and not having it eventually work out. 

Understanding reality means that you have to accept that some of your dreams won’t come true just because you work hard enough, be creative enough or go to enough seminars. Don’t base your decisions on a false model of reality.

Outcome Based Thinking

When pursuing a dream you have the underlying assumption that when you reach it you will be happy. That is false. 

Achieving goals doesn’t make you happy because achievements on their own hold no lasting emotional value. Only growth, fulfilment and passion has value.

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