i just read the powerlessness of positive thinking article on newyorker.com
it inspired me to write about my own decision making experiences.
first, some basic premises:
1) it is impossible to know everything, but you can do your best to find out what you can at a given moment
2) whatever i think works while writing this post, there is no guarantee it actually works
3) person’s decision making is way too complex to be defined in a post
4) purpose of this post is inspiration, and hardly a blueprint how to decide
second, what is a decision:
should you press a key on your keyboard?
should you drink water?
should you marry?
should you buy that candy?
should you start this project?
should you answer the phone?
we make decisions every nanosecond of our lives.
some seem like they have a huge impact on our lives.
some seem very trivial.
some decisions are very hard to make and some are so easy we do not even think or remember them.
when it feels hard, most likely we have a conflict, we are unsure what to do.
when it feels easy, we know what to do.
third, how can we be sure and avoid conflict?
it is not possible to avoid conflict and insecurity.
it is natural to be confused, scared, and to delay.
but what i would say is not best is having conflict without doing your best to know your options.
one thing is to be conflicted after you have a clear idea, so you operate on minimal prejudice.
another thing is to be conflicted without having a clear idea, and therefore operating on maximum prejudice.
so, whenever there is a conflict, it helps trying to figure things out a bit and see what can actually happen.
figure out what is the best and what is the worst case scenario.
how does this relate to positive thinking?
just as the newyorker.com article mention,
positive thinking and visualization prepares you for only one scenario.
positive thinking does not give you a realistic overview of all options.
therefore it does not give you more information to make a decision.
positive thinking still keeps you in a limbo of not knowing what will happen.
therefore your conflict can remain and grow.
positive thinking probably works well in case of superficial problems,
but not in the case of more complex decisions.
for anything less than trivial you need to visualize the worst, the best, and everything in between.
i think that only then your conflict will mature and your decision will be less risky.
moral of the story:
fuck it, just do it :)
hope this makes sense.