7 Strategies For Smarter Decision-Making, According to Science

7 Strategies For Smarter Decision-Making, According to Science

3. Make small environmental changes for a big impact

Sometimes all it takes is a little rearranging of your immediate domain to keep you on track, like moving enticements out of sight and out of mind or putting positive obstacles in your way. If the sight of a candy jar on the counter is too delicious to resist, try putting a bowl of fruit in front of it, or tuck it away inside a cabinet.

4. Create a contingency plan

This step, which the researchers call implementation intention, involves a little bit of planning that can go a long way. A 2010 study from NYU found the simple process of articulating “if, then” scenarios provide a game plan of sorts, a lasting association in your mind that reduces the likelihood of forgetfulness or procrastination and improves your perseverance toward your desired outcome.

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7 Strategies For Smarter Decision-Making, According to Science

5. Make a decision in advance — and stick to it

We know from research that declaring a decision in advance is a great way to help you stick to your word when it comes time to act. A recent field study found that employees who placed their lunch orders in the morning made meal choices that were five percent less caloric than their co-workers who ordered at the cafeteria and didn’t plan ahead.

6. Be mindful of your indulgences

This strategy could be particularly powerful for mindless indulgences, or cravings you don’t really notice until you’ve already satisfied them. 

Mindfulness practices, like meditation, or just actively taking note of how frequently you check Facebook, for instance, can provide the reality check you need and a burst of motivation to rein in your self-control.

Related: 3 Powerful Methods To Help Create The Results You Want And Succeed Faster

7. Grab an accountability buddy

Why go at it alone when you can invite a companion along on your journey? Ask someone you trust to hold you accountable for your intentions with gentle nudges and reminders, congratulations whenever you’ve made the smart choice instead of the indulgent one, and have them check in periodically to see how you’ve been doing.

Please share this article with anyone who you may think will find it valuable and helpful.


Written by Mallory Stratton
Originally appeared on Thrive Global
Republished with permission.
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7 Strategies For Smarter Decision Making, According to Science
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7 Strategies For Smarter Decision Making, According to Science
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7 Strategies For Smarter Decision-Making, According to Science
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7 Strategies For Smarter Decision-Making, According to Science
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Mallory Stratton

Mallory is Senior Product Content Editor at Thrive Global. She was recently Associate Editor on “It’s All In Your Head” by Keith Blanchard (Wicked Cow Studios, 2017), an illustrated brain science book, and worked closely on its accompanying cross-platform partnerships with Time Inc. and WebMD. She spends her off-hours curating playlists, practicing restorative yoga, and trying new teas.View Author posts