How To Avoid Decision Fatigue (Like Steve Jobs)

You need to learn how to avoid decision fatigue if you’ve ever had thoughts like, “Why is my brain always tired?”, or, “Why do I feel so unmotivated and tired?”

It’s because of decision fatigue which is the emotional and mental exhaustion from making so many choices throughout the day. Here’s how to combat decision fatigue.

So why did Steve Jobs wear a turtleneck and the same New Balance sneakers every day?

And why does Mark Zuckerberg have a collection of the same blue coloured t-shirts in his closet?

It’s this thing called ‘decision fatigue’.

What that means is your brain is like a muscle. The more decisions you make, the more it gets tired. And if you waste those decisions in the morning with what to wear or what to eat, then you’ll have less mental energy for the bigger things.

Now I’m not saying we should go to that extreme and have like a hundred of the same shirts. But what I am saying is to fix decision fatigue, we shouldn’t wake up in the morning and spend our mental energy on trivial things.

Things that don’t really move the needle forward in our life.

So when you first get to work or when you first wake up, don’t check your email and don’t check your social media. Check your goals.

Don’t check your social media and email because those things are the causes of decision fatigue, and they are reactive.

In case you haven’t realised, your email inbox is other people’s tasks they want you to do right now.

Whereas, if you set your goals, that’s coming internally and will really get you to where you want to go.

Woman sitting on a couch thinking while using a laptop imageDon’t check the small stuff like social media and email. Check the big stuff like what are your highest priorities for your life, for your week or for your day.

Another way to think about how to avoid decision fatigue is if you’ve listened to David Asprey from Bulletproof, he says to think of it like a bank account.

Throughout the day, you’ve only got so much money and so much mental energy you can spend. Don’t blow it on small things.

Spend it on the big things that will really make a difference in your life because the ‘myth’ about productivity and time management is that we can do it all.

We’ve got this whole list of things and we think we’ll be able to achieve all of them if given enough time.

But that’s not true at all. If you think about last week, last month, a year ago or five years ago, you probably got more things on your to-do list and you’ve gotten busier as your life goes on.

So the question is whether or not you’ll be able to do it all, the question is are you working on your highest priority right now.

Successful people, entrepreneurs and athletes know that they’ve only got limited time. So they spend it on the things that will really make the difference.

In Conclusion

Man holding a light bulb imageSo the big takeaway from this is just to think of your brain like a muscle or a bank account. You’ve only got limited energy and money to spend, so spend it on the things that are really important - the things that you proactively want to create with your goals. Not reactively like social media and email.

We hope you found this video and blog post, “How To Avoid Decision Fatigue To Achieve Your Highest Goals”, useful and now know how to combat decision fatigue. Comment below what your biggest takeaway is and what your aha moment is as well.

Until we meet again, just remember, you don’t have to get it right, you just have to get it started.

Learn how to simplify your life to avoid decision fatigue and become the most productive and successful version of yourself by checking out our Success Automation program here.

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Cham is the CEO and Head of Marketing at Authentic Education since co-founding it in 2009. He is passionate about productivity, empowering people, marketing and is creator of Digital Marketing Made Easy.

He has worked for Anthony Robbins, Chris Howard and Dr John Demartini from "The Secret" and has featured in BRW magazine, News.com.au and newspapers such as Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.