Sometimes, choice isn’t such a good thing. Sometimes, in fact, it sucks.
That’s the central premise of the book The Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz. While I don’t entirely agree with everything he says in this interesting tome, I do see his point on this one.
After all, I know what I like (usually). I know what my favorite foods are and what I will really want to wear when I’m looking through my closet in the morning (and it nearly always involves a sweater, by the way). So when suddenly I find myself out of my comfort zone (a new clothing store, say, or on vacation), and the number of options I have is suddenly drastically increased, it doesn’t always make me a happy camper.
Rosemary chicken is good, but most of the time, I just want to eat steak.
Interestingly, this phenomenon applies to music, too. Studies show that the more often you hear a song, the more you enjoy it. (I know what you’re thinking: that explains mainstream radio!)
So: my tip of the day: Screw variety.
Take the sure thing instead.
Not every time–but definitely in a restaurant.
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More mystical reading choices: