Why Do We Make Decisions

Topics: Critical thinking, Cognition, Decision making Pages: 3 (487 words) Published: November 16, 2014
Why Do We Make Decisions
The decisions we make decide who we are. Most people believe this is true, but could who we are determine what decisions we make? Can I really make a decision, or do I make it subconsciously then rationalize with logic and reasoning? Is it possible to overthink a decision? Research and studies have shown that it can. Some decisions are harder to make than others, is it because the more it could affect us the less we want to make it? Through researching decision making and behavior economics I have come to a better understanding of these questions.

A widely held theory about decision making is you either make it with your “gut”, logic, or mixture of both. Of course emotion plays a big part in making a decision and emotion often modifies how you make a decision. Your gut is your subconscious, quick decisions and immediate emotion. Your logic or cognition part in decision making takes time, attention and weighing pros and cons. Most times going with your gut is a good thing, but no one can argue with logic. The problem is our subconscious takes almost no effort while our logical thinking takes focus. In a study I read about they had participants walk and they asked those who were walking to solve logic problems. They compared the time it took to solve them correctly to the time it took someone who was sitting down to solve it. The person sitting down had a better time. Walking takes attentive thinking to do and so does logical thinking. This being said sitting don doesn’t take focus so it allows you to focus more on the task at hand.

Most of the time we make decisions on the choices we have. We pair choices up with each other and choose which one is better. Sometimes the more choices we have the worse decisions we make. The presentation by Dan Ariely shows this in an experiment with people who are subscribing for the Economist.

We have to live with our choices and face the consequences, but the biggest emotional drain of making...
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