Steve Jobs is known for his black turtleneck and Mark Zuckerberg is always seen with the same gray T-shirt. The so-called “decision fatigue” is real — little decisions you make every day can add up and tire you out. By spending less energy on choosing what to wear, you may be able to better focus on solving bigger problems. Here is a guide on how to make those little decisions you face every day so that you can dedicate your brainpower to creating the next Apple and Facebook.
What to wear
Is it just me, or does it feel like the more clothes you have, the fewer outfits you have to wear? If you’re stuck, try starting with the shoes then building your outfit up. What will you be doing today? Do you need to walk a lot? Does the weather call for sandals? Is it cold or rainy? Once you decide on what shoes to wear, find pants that compliment the shoes, then find a top, outerwear and any accessories. If you’re still stuck deciding your pants or top, default to a plain shirt and jeans, as you can never go wrong with those as long as your shoes match the occasion. Otherwise, just invest in 10 of the same items — be like Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg and wear the same outfit every day.
What to eat
You know you’re prone to decision fatigue if it takes you forever to decide on a place to go, and another forever to decide on a menu item. When you’re not eating, keep a list of places to go on your Notes app or Yelp bookmarks. Whenever you hear recommendations or have favorites, add them to the list. Then, when you’re choosing where to go, pick a place by ruling out what you last ate and by wherever is closest to you. How much time and what access to transportation do you have? If you’re not particularly in the mood for anything, always opt for the healthy option — high protein, lots of greens and low carbs — for no regrets.
To work out or not
Sometimes your schedule is packed, but you still want to squeeze in a gym session to stay active. Other times you’re completely free, and while your mind tells you to go to the gym, your body won’t budge. If you’re debating whether or not to go to the gym, check: Do you have time and access to a shower after? Will you still have energy left for plans later in the day? If the answer is yes, then yes, go to the gym — always say yes to the gym, and your body will thank you later.
To attend that event or not
You can technically attend the event, but you’re “busy,” a.k.a. too lazy and want to avoid awkward interactions. When you’re torn between whether or not to attend an event, ask yourself, what value will the event bring to you? Can you gain at least one thing — a new experience, a new connection, a useful insight, free food or memories? If the event provides at least one thing of value to you and your schedule allows for it, then yes, attend the event.
Life is full of decisions, and sometimes, making a wrong decision is better than making no decision. When in doubt, go for it, and you can always learn from your mistakes!