Friday, April 25, 2008

Be A Chooser, Not a Picker

Shopping can be a bewildering experience. With so many options to choose from, how do we make a choice? Barry Scwhartz in his book The Paradox of Choice discusses two ways in which we can make decisions. The first way is to be a picker. The second is to be a chooser. But only one gives us more peace of mind in the end. I will show how both ways affect how we end up with what is in our closets.

A picker looks at all the options available to him, and analyzes each one. A picker is not satisfied with looking at just a few options, but feels compelled to investigate further, deeper and wider. Ultimately a picker wants to pick the very best option, and feels incredible anxiety over picking exactly the right one. You probably remember this feeling from childhood when you stood in front of the candy rack for what seemed like hours and you just couldn't pick out only one from the many. Or as an adult, you may have experienced this when you went to buy a new car or a new computer. We are taught that we need to make careful choices...but when the options are too many, making the choice leads to overwhelm and uncertainty.

A chooser, however, does not feel compelled to examine every option available. A chooser knows the criteria necessary to make a choice between options, and any option that satisfies the criteria will suffice. Often, a chooser will rely on habits and customs when making decisions in order not to waste the mental energy that would be necessay to re-invent the wheel. In spite of this seemingly irresponsible method, the chooser does not experience nearly as much regret over missed opportunity once the choice is made.

In terms of managing your closet, several things become clear:

1) Know before you shop what it is you are looking for. Know what size, what color, what style, what fabric, what price. If you know that a certain brand is fail-safe, then buy that brand. Look until you find what you are looking for. And when you find it, buy it. Don't spend too much time wondering if there might be a better deal around the corner. There may, and there may not.

2) Limit the amount of clothes in your wardrobe. Remember, the more options there are to pick from, the less satisfied you will be with your choice. And the harder it will be to make one in the first place!

3) Have pre-determined oufits to choose from. (Choose, remember? Not pick!) When you know already that something works, you spend less time making decisions.

Tomorrow I'll explain a bit about why you should make your choices nonreversible. And now that you've made your choice to be here tomorrow, I'll see you then! Same blog time...same blog channel...

(If you would like more information on wardrobe planning, come visit my website!)


lisa said...

Oh I'm a picker alright! You were describing me perfectly. Hopefully I'm trainable! I'll keep reading and maybe some of it will sink in.

Aaron said...

Not me, I'm all about being a chooser. Great article, very well thought out!

Aaron's Blog

Scott said...

choose choice. Another great post keep up the good work.

Scott A. Bell

Matthew Shields said...

I would have to classify myself as a picky chooser. Or maybe an educated chooser. Deffinately sway to the choosy side of things.
contractor marketing for dummies

Sami Miettinen said...

I can't decide. I used to be indecisive, but now I am not sure. :-)

Great point about regret. I think you are right in that shoppers really need to feel satisfied and regret is the enemy of that.

- Sami

Tim Birch said...

I wear what my wife picked out. She was a Personal Dresser. With the Net I wear whatever is clean.(See I have standards!)

'TimBirch –Sell more or Die!

drpeter said...

I am a picker like Lisa


Romance Coach, Online Dating Coach said...

Indeed, I hear SO many singles who first approach me to work with them as their Online Dating Coach say, "But April, I'm picky."


Instead, be CHOOSEY!

Jenn, another great post on wardrobe wisdom, image, and style.

So helpful for singles dating whether they are meeting from Online Dating Site, internet personals, or other forms of Social Media.

All the best,

April Braswell

Online Dating Coach, Dating Expert, Relationship Coach, Romance Coaching

Online Dating Sites Review, Internet Dating Sites Guide