On decisions

We have freedom and can make a lot of decisions — isn’ it great? On the other hand, we often have to make decisions. I generally don’t like making decisions. Making a decision means that I will most probably regret it sooner or later.

I use a regret-based approach to making decisions. I try to estimate the probability that I’ll regret the decision. Sometimes, that probability is 100% for one option, so the other option wins by default.

About a year ago, in early 2009, I decided to quit my work and explore Poland. I reached that decision by realising that if I don’t do it, I will regret it for sure. My vacation time ended up being almost three times as long as I expected, mostly due to unplanned trip to Korea, which was great. I didn’t really have enough money to go there, but I knew I would definitely regret not going. 2009 has definitely been the best year of my life so far.

I wish I could apply this approach to making decisions more broadly, as it rarely fails. There are decisions for which I am fully aware of the right choice, yet can’t follow through and end up choosing the bad one.

5 thoughts on “On decisions

  1. There is no free will. The world is deterministic, as described by physics. There is no reason to think otherwise. The impression of free will we have is just an illusion the brain creates, you cannot trust “feelings” like these. All processes in the brain can be described by physics — i.e., are deterministic.

  2. Does that mean that you are or are not going to write the thesis?

    On a more serious note, I think that for example quantum physics seems pretty nondeterministic to us at the moment.

  3. Oh, and even if everything is completely deterministic, I am determined to try to make correct decisions. I am determined to think that trying to make right decisions is a good thing. That can’t be bad, right?

    Also, deterministic world seems like a great thing — no matter how bad I fuck up, I’ll still get the predetermined result. No need to worry about anything anymore!

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