We are making decisions every single moment of our life; what food to order at a restaurant, which YouTube recommended video to watch, or what color mask (if any) to wear before heading out.
At times, making decisions can be the simplest thing to execute.
But at other times, it is one of the hardest things to do.
How can we better make decisions for ourselves, especially for those that feel like life or death?
I was reading through “Designing Your Life”, where decision making is important for designing your life (go figure), and I learned that decision making is actually only one of the parts to decision making.
Decision Making in 3 Simple Steps:
Weigh out all your options
Filter down your options into 3-5 choices
Make a decision from the 3-5 choices (through cost-benefit analysis)
These steps work because of 2 underlying insights:
More options in your pool = Greater likelihood of having the best option
Too many choices = Paralysis, which is a lot of wasted time
The truth is, we are easily bought into the first insight (it is good to have the most options), but easily forget that more options do not equate to easy decision making.
In fact, Harvard did a study by selling jam to prove how more options created worse decision-making for people.
In one scenario, they displayed 6 jams being sold, and out of the 40% people who stopped by, about 30% of people bought jam.
In another scenario, they laid out 24 jams (wow, much jam), and out of the 60% people who stopped by (bigger proportion), only 3% of people stopped to pick out jams.
The conclusion was that if you have too many options, you end up having no options.
By having a wide amount of options, and sizing down, you can have actual choices. And when you have fewer choices, you can actually make a decision.
Even though weighing the cost-benefit analysis of each choice and executing on a decision is still difficult, having a step-by-step process to help in decision making can make all the difference.
“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”
Of course, depends on if that’s the type of jam you’re into. 😉
Questions to ponder: 🤔
What area in life can you reduce the number of options you have in order to help make a decision?
A collection of resources for you to enjoy… 📰 🎬 🎙️
“How I (Sean) Write Scripts for my Youtube Videos”
If you’re ever interested in how to write Youtube Videos, Sean Tucker shares how to. A photography expert who makes YouTube videos on photography, he uses his platform as a medium to share other cool topics.
One thing I love about his videos (from the few I’ve seen) is that he’s very authentic and real. It feels like he’s speaking to you directly and is right next to you, and I find that to be inspiring.
The format he uses to write his video scripts is similar to the format he used to write his sermons when he used to shepherd a church.
The three parts are:
The Question - state the intent, in the form of the title of the video—The goal is to make a promise and fulfill it in the video.
The Meat - the content shared. 3 points if possible—The goal is to work on saying less, and saying it well.
The Benediction - repeating what was said, how to apply it & wishing well the listener—The goal is to impart a summary and personal encouragement.
Using this framework, he is able to write out scripts that he can follow to clearly share the ideas he has to offer on Youtube. He shares other tips and examples in the video, so I would recommend watching it in full if you are wanting to make videos yourself!
One of the topics I enjoy learning about is marketing (specifically in the realm of YouTubers and streamers), and Devin Nash, who is a CMO at a marketing agency runs a YouTube channel that dives into many different topics and gives juicy details about the insides with a marketing perspective.
An interesting takeaway from his video on cancel culture is that most of the time, cancel culture does not successfully cancel a person but can empower their brand if responded to correctly.
Puts the phrase “There is no such thing as bad publicity” to perspective.
There is also another paradoxical conclusion, that when cancel culture is successful in canceling someone, it is usually the people who have high morals and ethics who leave the scene.
The people who take responsibility and respond to the cancel culture are the ones that pay the highest price.
This means that people with good morals and ethics, attempting to improve and be better, are kicked out, while people who are narcissistic and are abusing the marketing empowerment of cancel culture continue to thrive.
Of course, there are exceptions, but it’s a dangerous thing to consider.
Learnings, verses, & quotes to chew on… 🧐
Verse of the Week
“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.
But rejoice insofar as you share Christ's sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.”
—1 Peter 4:12-13
“In every difficult moment ask yourself what is a hard choice and what is an easy choice and you will know instantly what is right.”
Weekly Update (& 2021 Theme)
Personal life stuff… 🔔
Greetings from Dallas! 👋
I started work again this past week, and I’m glad that I got time off. The rest and quality time with family and friends rejuvenated my soul and mind, and though I still don’t know where I hope to go with work and my end goals beyond it, I’m aiming for a direction with better priorities in mind.🎯
I’ve also recognized how little time I have each day now that I have a 9-5(ish) schedule.⏱️
Over the break, it was easy to lollygag away the hours with YouTube & Netflix (10/10 would recommend The Great Pretender) and binge read manga and webtoons, while still finding time to do high-quality work or take hour-long walks whilst listening to audiobooks.🎧
But now with work, I’m ending the days exhausted, with only an hour or two to spare, and have to pick and choose the things I can do.🤯
I can only imagine when the season of ministry ramps up what I’ll have to sacrifice in order to focus and take care of my responsibilities.
I’ll probably have to go through another round of reflection for why if I fail to prioritize and lose sight of everything.🤔
Existential direction aside, I’ve been exploring my writing style as well as how I structure content in this newsletter, giving myself more or less freedom, so you’ll probably see differences as time goes on. Let me know any thoughts of changes if you do!
Final comment, last year, I set a theme, to be better on Focus & Rest, and I’ve definitely gained some perspective on both aspects (priorities and sabbath). I also learned that yearly themes don’t work for me. 😅 There are so many seasonal changes of life throughout a year (literally and figuratively), that I’ll probably have to pivot my theme potentially quarterly (wow, I sound old like a businessman…👨💼)
2021 Theme: Being Present & Effective 💪
This year, I’m starting off with a theme of Being Present & Effective.
Going off of my new year’s resolutions in last week’s update, I recognize I need to be present at the moment in order to be real & show deep kindness.
I can only be real if I am present of myself, and to show deep kindness I need to be aware and present of how others feel while taking the courage to care.
And to be effective, I just gotta not multi-task.
Most of my sleepless nights and failures to execute well has been me being distracted doing too much at once (watching YouTube, reading manga, listening to music, and trying to complete 3 responsibilities at once… insanity), and if I were to just focus what is in front of me and complete it, that would be gamechanging.
Do you have a theme you plan to take for this year (or quarter)? Would love to hear about it! 🙂
Anyways, here are several pictures from this past week: 📷
Haha I’m sorry to burn that last image into y’alls mind. (not really 😂)
Thanks for checking in as always! 😭 I’m always appreciative of all of y’all who let me know your thoughts or comments on the update/newsletter, as it gives me joy and energy.😁
With that, stay safe 😷 , keep it savvy 🧠 , and I’ll see y’all in the next update 😊
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Want to write a guest post? Have a cool article, resource, verse, or quote to share? Email me @ eric-lee [at] utexas [dot] edu.