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Ecaterina Sanalatii

Consultant, MooD International

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What is the key to smarter decisions?

My question to the TED community is what is the key to smarter decisions?

As individuals, how can we make smarter decisions in everyday life?
How is this different in business decision making?
Can we help others make a better decision or should this be done out of own will?

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    Oct 5 2012: I'm also going to add another post here that will probably get some fur flying, but there is another aspect about decision making that most people don't comprehend.

    You need to decide whether you actually need to be trying to make a decision in the first place.

    Much human stress is a product of worrying about things the person has no control over in the first place. If you have no control over it, you don't need to be trying to make any decision about it. Let it go. It's probably somebody else's decision to be making, so you don't need to be getting involved in it to begin with.

    Don't fool yourself by thinking that just BECAUSE you can make decisions, you NEED to be involved in decisions that are other people's responsibility or right to make. It's not very "smart" to try to force your decisions on somebody else, unless they have agreed to let you do that, and given you the right to do so. There are exceptions of course...you may need to force your decision on somebody to uphold laws or to prevent them from harming others. But in many everyday situations, people try to force their decision makining onto someone else for a variety of wrong reasons.

    Think about the old saying..."When I want your opinion, I'll ask for it." The same should apply to trying to make decisions for other people in many cases.
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      Oct 6 2012: Hi Rick,
      You did not ask for my opinion, so I hope you do not mind if I agree with you:>)

      You write..."You need to decide whether you actually need to be trying to make a decision...human stress is a product of worrying about things the person has no control over...not very smart to try to force your decisions on somebody else..."...... good points Rick.

      This is part of the "available information" I refer to in another comment on this thread. We all have the ability to sift through information to determine how, why, when, where and with whom we want or need to make decisions.

      "Grant me the serenity to accept things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference".

      You are absolutely right that some folks spend a lot of time and energy worrying and stressing about some things that may not make a difference....like trying to make decisions for others.
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      Oct 10 2012: I agree with you, Rick. Sometimes it's important to actually measure if a decision is necessary. As Colleen says, it should be based on the information available to us to make that decision. Sometimes it's better to let a risk occur than to make a decision to stop it (though I think it's quite hard to measure the available information that would enable someone to decide whether it's better to let something happen or not).

      On the flip side of that, sometimes it's better not to make a decision when information isn't available. This comes to the point of rushed decisions and stress. Sometimes people are too fast to judge...
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        Oct 10 2012: Quote): "On the flip side of that, sometimes it's better not to make a decision when information isn't available. This comes to the point of rushed decisions and stress. Sometimes people are too fast to judge..."

        Excellent point, Ecaterina. That concept applies to many disciplines.

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