A podcast that I was listening to this week talked about Jeff Bezos’s algorithm for decision-making. If you’ve ever heard of decision fatigue and analysis paralysis, it’s exactly the type of uncertainty I face whenever I sit down to write or make YouTube videos.
One good example of this is my podcast, Common Sense Medicine. I ping around from idea to idea, until I set on one. Then, decision fatigue hits. A better solution would be to split it up and to just start writing. To help me with this, I have given myself a rule based on Ali Abdaal’s 2 Year Rule and Noah Kagan’s law of 100. Basically, it boils down to being consistent and doing something for 2 years. I’m reminded of Derek Sivers’s story, Don’t be a Donkey, whenever I talk about the perils of analysis paralysis.
Enter Jeff Bezos
When faced with a massive decision, Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, thinks about two constraints: whether the decision is (a) reversible and (b) important. If it is a highly important and irreversible decision, then you should procrastinate this decision until you have as much information as possible. If either of these conditions are loosened, then you should make the decision quickly, and then iterate when you get enough data to see whether you made a mistake or not.
I’m going to try to incorporate this into my workflow. Most of the decisions that ultimately fatigue me are of the reversible kind, and some of those are highly unimportant. It’s so weird how I’m letting some of these dictate how productive I am being though out the day. Try and see how this works by reflecting on your decisions before you make them.