What Are The Consequences?
Every day, we make a variety of decisions — from what to wear, whether to reply to a text message or not, what task to begin first, and these are just some of the decisions that we’re consciously aware of. Yet, although we all make countless decisions, many are unaware of not only how to make sound decisions but also the importance of having a variety of decision-making models.
As a result, many go through life making decisions based on factors such as their emotions, peer pressure, societal programming, instant gratification and so on … Factors that might appear to help you in the short term but in the long run, do more harm than good.
Which then begs the question, how does one make sound decisions?
Well, in the wise words of Charlie Munger … If you want to make better decisions, you need to use more than one mental model when looking at a problem.
Alternatively, what tends to happen is that most use the same mental model for nearly every decision they make. They view all decisions with the same lens when in reality, decisions vary in magnitude and consequences.
So, where does one start in acquiring and improving their decision-making models? To begin, one must study multiple disciplines — ideally, the major disciplines because …
All the wisdom of the world is not to be found in one little academic department. — Charlie Munger
What’s more, is that we cannot simply just study these disciplines and their mental models, we must take the extra step of implementing them. Meaning, once you have added a mental model to your tool-kit, you must then go about implementing it so as to learn about it from personal experience.
At this point, all of this might seem like too much work, and the ideal decision might seem to be that forming decision-making models should be thrown in the too hard basket. However, if you decide to go down this route, you will be doing yourself a great disservice.
Why? Because the results you achieve in life are a direct result of the decisions you make.
Therefore, the more you improve your decision making, the more you improve your life. And for those of you that do choose to add decision-making models into your mental repertoire, doing so isn’t as hard as it initially appears, because as in the words of Charlie Munger …
Eighty or ninety important models will carry about ninety percent of the freight in making you a worldly-wise person. And, of those, only a mere handful really carry heavy freight. — Charlie Munger
Which on first glance, eight or ninety mental models might appear to be quite daunting. Especially if you’ve only just come to realise that mental models exist, or that you need them. However, learning a variety of mental models isn’t something that’s done within a day, let alone a year. If anything, it’s a somewhat endless pursuit, one that requires many years, if not decades of learning, implementing and assessing.
In essence, every decision we make takes us either towards or away from the person we want to become. Therefore, to make decisions that serve us and our goals, we must have decision-making models to keep us accountable in our quest of not only making better decisions but also in becoming our best selves.
Now, I want to hear from you! Do you have any mental models that you use? If so, what are they? Let me know in the comments below or message me directly.