choice — what a terrible thing?

June 27, 2008 at 4:39 pm | Posted in Professional Development | 2 Comments

Psychologist Barry Schwartz takes aim at a central tenet of western societies: freedom of choice.  It is an interesting position with which I agree now that we are raising three kids.  Give them too many choices, and it overloads them.  You can see it plain as day in kids.  I doubt we adults are much different, other than we have learned how to mask it better.

There is one thing in Schwartz’s video that stood out to me: the regret that exists after choosing something when so many choices were in front of you.  I see this in software development all the time.  It’s so easy to look back and play the “if only we had…” game.

So on the front end, you’ve got potential “analysis paralysis” with all the choices, and on the back end you’ve got regret.  Sigh.  Maybe at a subconscious level, that’s why I bought a Mac!

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