The paradox of choice: why more is less

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Whether we're buying a pair of jeans, ordering a cup of coffee, selecting a long-distance carrier, applying to college, choosing a doctor, or setting up a 401(k), everyday decisions--both big and small--have become increasingly complex due to the overwhelming abundance of choice with which we are presented.

As Americans, we assume that more choice means better options and greater satisfaction. But beware of excessive choice: choice overload can make you question the decisions you make before you even make them, it can set you up for unrealistically high expectations, and it can make you blame yourself for any and all failures. In the long run, this can lead to decision-making paralysis, anxiety, and perpetual stress. And, in a culture that tells us that there is no excuse for falling short of perfection when your options are limitless, too much choice can lead to clinical depression.

In The Paradox of Choice, Barry Schwartz explains at what point choice--the hallmark of individual freedom and self-determination that we so cherish--becomes detrimental to our psychological and emotional well-being. In accessible, engaging, and anecdotal prose, Schwartz shows how the dramatic explosion in choice--from the mundane to the profound challenges of balancing career, family, and individual needs--has paradoxically become a problem instead of a solution. Schwartz also shows how our obsession with choice encourages us to seek that which makes us feel worse.

By synthesizing current research in the social sciences, Schwartz makes the counter intuitive case that eliminating choices can greatly reduce the stress, anxiety, and busyness of our lives. He offers eleven practical steps on how to limit choices to a manageable number, have the discipline to focus on those that are important and ignore the rest, and ultimately derive greater satisfaction from the choices you have to make.

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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID 50e52ea7-efff-fd28-4631-7306a1bb4840
Grouping Title paradox of choice why more is less
Grouping Author schwartz barry
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2019-03-24 23:11:31PM
Last Indexed 2019-03-25 00:35:00AM

Solr Details

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display_description Explains how an abundance of choice can become detrimental to a person's psychological and emotional well-being, discussing how a recent explosion in choice in all aspects of society has become a problem instead of a solution.
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publishDate 2004, 2005, 2009
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subject_facet Choice (Psychology), Decision making, Decision-making
title_display The paradox of choice : why more is less
title_full The Paradox of Choice Why More Is Less, The paradox of choice : why more is less / Barry Schwartz
title_short The paradox of choice :
title_sub why more is less
topic_facet Choice (Psychology), Decision making, Decision-making, Nonfiction, Psychology, Sociology