I’ve watched this video many times since I came across it a few years back, and I try to show it to every new General Paper class I teach as a way to understand the thinking process involved in assessing a situation and taking an informed position on any situation or topic. Beyond an academic context, I find this endlessly useful in my personal life as well when the going gets tough and tricky decisions have to be made — and there are quite a lot more of these in everyday life than one realises.
The truth is there are no easy decisions no matter how small they seem, especially when there is a crunch on resources–whether it is time, money or energy. However, Chang suggests that we can still make good decisions and live with them when we learn to see alternatives as being on a par — where one alternative is not better than the other, in which case decisions become easier as long as you know what your values are. In essence, there are no right or wrong choices per se, only choices that fit who and where you are in life, which is inevitably unique despite broad similarities with others who travel a similar path.
I find this decision-making framework comforting and liberating for the most part because it keeps you moving forward instead of dawdling and procrastinating. It also helps you learn to not only trust your choices, but more importantly, who you are.
Image Credit: ted.com