Tired Brain? The Psychology of Decision Fatigue

What is Decision Fatigue?

Why some successful people wear the same clothes every day? Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos, Steve Jobs belonged to this tribe! Here’s what goes behind the idea of choosing to wear the same clothes every day. For instance: I, as a CEO, have to make two decisions. One — whether to wear white shoes, red or brown ones and Second — whether I should hire a sales representative for my company or slog on my own?

The science behind a tried brain

To answer these questions, a team of neuroscientists, conducted research on how the brain deals with uncertainty when making decisions was carried out. Let’s go back to the lighter here for a moment. To decide whether you want to continue flicking it, you must first decide whether there is a flame or not? That activates the regions in your brain responsible for processing sensory information such as sight or touch.

Ways to overcome decision fatigue

Given that we are faced with decision fatigue every day, can we reduce or overcome it? What can we do?

  1. Plan: Some tasks require spur of the moment decisions and they could be very important. But, the less important tasks, could always be planned the night before. When you make these less-than-3-minute-decisions in advance, it saves up your willpower the next day for crucial decisions.
  2. Prioritise: Write down the order of priority of your tasks from High Priority to Low Priority tasks. Do the most important thing on your list at the beginning of your day ideally so that you can get it out of your way. This will not only keep you motivated and drive you but also help you manage your time better.
  3. Simplify: Most of the decisions we make sometimes are totally insignificant to us. Eliminate those and simplify your life by choosing what is important to you. By simplifying and decluttering, you amplify your energy on things that matter the most to you. It could be satisfying as well as personally rewarding.
  4. Eat & Sleep well: Better decision-making is a result of eating well and having enough sleep. When you want to do better, you begin making the right food choices, eventually disciplining yourself to get a good night’s sleep too!



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Aditya Gupta

Aditya Gupta

Building | Product, Growth & Business | Investments @Hustle Partners | 2x exit | Startups. Travel. Music. Curious. Learner.