Decision Fatigue

Decision Fatigue

Decision fatigue is the deterioration of the quality of decisions people make after a long session of decision making.

This was coined by social psychologist Roy Baumeister who argues that making too many decisions eventually depletes our willpower to the point where we're unconcsiously making increasingly poor decisions.

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Problem Solving


  • Reduce your number of daily decisions. Reserve your energy for important decisions and cut down on the unnecessary trivial ones.
  • Make decisions in advance.
  • Changes your mindset about willpower. Start believing that willpower is not limited because this kind of mindset keeps us in a box that restricts us from performing taxing tasks.
The Impact of Decision Fatigue
  1. Impaired ability to make trade-offs - this is an energy-consuming type of decision making and when we're faced with too many we end up mentally depleted
  2. Impulse purchases - decisions regarding prices and promotions produce decision fatigue
  3. Decision avoidance - when our mental energy reaches the point of complete depletion we will completely avoid making decisions
John Tierney

“Decision fatigue helps explain why ordinarily sensible people get angry at colleagues and families, splurge on clothes, buy junk food at the supermarket and can’t resist the dealer’s offer to rustproof their new car. No matter how rational and high-minded you try to be, you can’t make decision after decision without paying a biological price.”

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The belief that societies continue to decline is often linked with rosy retrospection - believing that the past was better and the future more negative.

Declinism can cloud your judgement and steer you toward bad decisions.

Why simplicity?

Simple thinking can lead to safer plans, better communication, and easier execution. The power of simplicity is apparent throughout history, where strategists and artists alike strived for simplicity. Let's look at a few examples!

Negative Capability

Intellectual certainty can limit our creativity. Where lies a certain path, many alternative doors leading to innovative ideas are ignored. In contrast, negative capability is the art of embracing intellectual uncertainty.

Negative capability is about uncertainty, mystery, and doubt, as opposed to “fixed” and “enforced” conceptions of the world. Negative capability encourages us to keep an open mind and always consider the possibility that we may be wrong. Negative capability goes hand in hand with continuous learning, discouraging arrogance, and encouraging personal growth. 

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