The Daily Challenge: Always Find a 3rd Option
What might happen if you imagined an alternative option to every decision or choice?
The Third Choice.
Time to read: 2 mins
Option overload, or "choice overload" is a real problem. Sometimes having too many choices in front of you can lead to making no choice at all.
More frequently, however, we give ourselves two options and end up a bit inside the box.
Do this or do that. The first options we choose are often be the most obvious options. Go to the event or stay home?...Have dessert or skip it?....Buy the blue jacket or the read jacket?
So how can we move way from this? Consider a third option.
When you go through the exercise of creating a third choice you shift from thinking about your default options and instead think about something a little more outside of the box. You're giving yourself an opportunity to consider factors that you otherwise may not have considered.
Today, take a minute to think about your third choice in every situation. If the first two options were simply eliminated, what would you do instead? You can do this for your lunch choice, a deadline for a project, whether or not to attend a meeting, etc.
Step 1: Identify the obvious options. In some cases, you may need to think through several options before moving away from the most comfortable or clear choices.
Step 2: Identify what an alternative option look like. Choosing between X and Y? What would Z look like?
Step 3: Repeat.Make it a point move through this thought exercise throughout your entire day.You may start to notice that you shift the way you approach decisions, even just slightly.
Pro Tip: You're making a choice every time you do anything at all...and even when you're doing nothing. Take a step back and ask yourself what else you could be doing with your time.
Sometimes we're not choosing between two options, but instead choosing to do one option without ever considering alternatives. If you're watching a great series on Netflix, for example, you could ask yourself what else you could be doing. Maybe you won't change your action, but at least you're more aware of the alternatives.
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