6 Jars of Jam vs. 24 Jars of Jam

Imagine you're in a supermarket.

You come to a table full of 24 jams. You can only pick one.

"But how can I pick one from over 24 jars of jam? There's so many that I would like. There's no way that I can decide."

You get paralysis by analysis. You attempt to weigh out the pros and cons of all 24 jams. But you get overwhelmed with all of the choice, so you skip the jam and don't pick any at all. Instead, you've chosen to wander around the grocery market buying other things until you can decide on what kind of jam you want.

The thing is, you came to the store to buy some jam. Walking around is a choice you're making so that you don't have to make a choice.

I imagine a lot of young people go through this process in life like I did.

You probably have been told by your parents that "anything is possible", and that you can do whatever you like.

This is slightly misleading and I think puts most teenagers in an indecisive frame-of-mind. It makes them think, "gee if I can do anything, I shouldn't just settle for doing one thing." And instead of doing everything, they do - *surprise* *surprise* - nothing.

By nothing, I mean making the choice to make no choice at all - essentially the choice to just run on auto-pilot.

Life may seem like there's a bunch of possibilities out there, but in reality, you have a backstory. You know what you really dislike. That eliminates half of the jars of jam. Now there's 12.

You partly know what you like. That eliminates another half. Now there's 6 jars left.

Not as overwhelming right?

It's good to eliminate choices out of your life.

Close doors on paths that you never want to be in. I know I never want to be a doctor, lawyer, or a lab scientist. That made making future decisions a lot more easier.

I'm still making decisions this way.

The world is vast, but only as vast in the way it works for you.


Concept borrowed from my current read, "The Defining Decade," by Meg Jay.