Thursday, January 31, 2013

When to Choose

There seems to be a difference in terms of brain energy expenditures between comtemplating options and actually makes choices. In one study by Yale University Professor Nathan Novemsky and his colleagues, participants who were asked to rate the attractiveness of different options were much less depleted of brain energy than were participants who were asked to actually make choices between the very same options.  It requires more brain executive resources to switch from a state of deliberating to a state of implementation. It takes more energy to transition from thinking about options to actually following through on a decision. Since making choices appears to deplete the brain's executive resources, subsequent decisions may be affected adversely if you are forced to choose with a fatigued brain. Try limiting choices to two at a time (your brain only has two cerebral hemispheres) and make your decision at a time when your brain is less likely to be fatigued. For example, if you decide first thing in the morning to stop by the gym and exercise right after work, you may be much more likely to follow through than if you try to make that decision at the end of a busy work day.

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