On a Saturday noon, after doing some shopping I thought to grab some quick snack in Subway when the decision making fatigue hit me. I’ve never been eating in Subway before, although there is plenty of those places around here. I’ve never before felt urge to try, because I’ve felt I eat enough bred already as it is to go buying more from a restaurant. Now I decided to try since my colleague actually likes Subway and recommended me to try sometimes.
So now I had the chance to try, I’ll step into a small Subway around the metro station. First to check what kind bread, then how big bread, then cheese, warm it or not, salads, salad dressing and finally anything to drink..? That’s a lot of decision on so small thing like a filled bread!
I really felt decision making fatigue after that experience. I don’t enjoy making so many decision, I would rather make less decisions than more.
Decision making fatigue term was coined by social psychologist Roy F. Baumeister.
To avoid decision making fatigue habits are useful, because where conscious decisions deplete willpower, habits will run on autopilot and conserve energy. Consciously built habits are big winners which help us live better lives with more energy.
I guess what I am gonna start doing is to consider, which parts of the life currently really need more active decision making and on the other hand which don’t.
I’ve already done this to a degree, by not choosing to think too much what to eat. Instead I’ve picked up good enough and healthy enough lunch restaurant at work. In there I can eat healthy every day without too much thinking about it. Essentially I’ve this way outsourced what I eat to the restaurant which I trust enough to deliver on this expectation.
What decisions you can outsource or do on autopilot? What areas of life you on the other hand need do the conscious decisions?