Too many options are ruining your life

Photo by Vladislav Babienko on Unsplash

Having a choice is great, but then, you have to make a decision. You commit, but then…what if you made the wrong choice? What if there were better alternatives?

With choice comes responsibility, angst, and hesitation.

Sometimes life is easier when there is less choice.

Free will

Free will is mostly an illusion. Not only you are heavily influenced by your past experiences and upbringing but also, you are being constantly manipulated by the media, Internet, society, and your biological urges.

Do an experiment, close your eyes and wait, observe the first thought that comes to your mind. Did you choose that thought? Where did it come from? If thoughts appear in our mind outside our control that means we are not as independent as we would like to think.

We are bound by the environment, our past, and biology.

If there is no free will then, there is no free choice. We just engage in the illusion of choice when in reality something else is choosing for you.

But what about my preferences? Isn’t that free will? No, if you’ve been influenced by your past, the environment or the media.

Acquired taste

As kids, we all like simple things; sweet and salty flavors, bright colors, loud music, etc.

Later in life, we develop a more sophisticated taste, the acquired taste — Those things that are hard to like but after a while, we develop a fancy for them.

I would argue that acquired taste gives us more pleasure and more depth than other more simple preferences.

Nowadays, I very much enjoy fine wine, Jazz, literature and sushi, but I used to hate all that. Had I stuck with my initial choices I’d still be eating hot dogs, listening to teenage pop, and drinking Fanta. Lucky escape!

Your brain is lazy and doesn’t like new stuff, but sometimes it’s better to give no choice in order to grow and learn.

We are not very good judges about our preferences, that’s why we are often pleasantly surprised when we have to do something we didn’t plan.

One of my favorite bars is a “take it or leave it” kind of place. Juan, the owner, lets everyone know as they sit down: “ This is my house and you eat what I give you, when I go to your house I expect the same treatment”

No choice

Thanks to Juan, I’ve tried amazing foods I would have never chosen like, wild boar, deer, sea urchin, etc.

Think about that. Life is not about choices, it’s about making the most of what you are given.

Avoid choice fatigue and do your best with whatever you’ve got. Life will be simpler and more fulfilling.

Not having a choice could be a blessing in disguise. Burn your ships, like the Vikings when they went to conquer a new place, that way you eliminate the option of withdrawal.

It’s either victory or death, that’s the only choice worth having.

Student of life. Trying to make sense of it all, be happy and help others achieve their dreams. Join me at: albertotheauthor@gmail.com

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