How To Make Tough Decisions

How To Make Tough Decisions

One of the reasons you have a tough time making decisions is because when you make a decision you are cutting away from the past. If you decide to get a wife you are cutting away from living the single life.

This is just one example, in this article we are going to look at a formula for how to make tough decisions.

1. Game theory
This is a theory invented by John Nash that tries to predict human behaviour and calculating who and what outcome has the highest odds.
Prisoners dilemma
The prisoner’s dilemma is a good example on this and it looks at what a prisoner should do with the options they have based on the situation they are in. Take a look at the illustration below:

What you will see is that it is in the best interest of the person to confess, regardless of what the other person is doing.

2. Worst case scenario
A good exercise is to go to worst case scenario and see if you would be able to survive that scenario. Say you go for your dream job and you don’t get it, what’s the worst case scenario, now would you be able to survive that? If yes, then go for it. You know the risk, but you’ve already realized that you are good with that.

3. Does the decisions match your values and principles
Move on, you’ll have more than enough opportunities in your life. Don’t sacrifice on your values and principles.

4. The tougher the decision, the better the council you need
If you’re making a bigger decision you need to make sure that you have better council. Preferably you want to find people that have already gone through the experience and that are neutral. This will help you out dramatically in your decision making.

5. What’s your alternative
Sometimes you need to figure out what all your alternatives are and make the best decision based on the choices you have.

6. Decision fatigue
Never make a big decision when you are fatigued, don’t let your temporary exhaustion have consequences on your big decisions. Don’t be afraid to sleep on it.

7. Once you make the decision, stick with it.
When you make a decision, stick with it and move on. If you start thinking “what if” you will slow you down drastically.


Patrick Bet-David
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