Some factors to consider when making a decision:
- What are the short-term and long-term ramifications of your decision?
- Who does my decision impact? Just me? Friends and family? Others outside of my immediate vision? Is this for better or worse?
The “35,000 Decisions A Day” Claim
There are multiple secondary sources online claiming that, on average, a person makes 35,000 decisions each day. No sources that I could find provided a reference to any sort of study backing that number up; most use phrasing such as “They say” or “it’s estimated”.
Based on this, the following sources all appear to be flawed and should not be trusted1:
- http://science.unctv.org/content/reportersblog/choices (this references the Cornell University research paper by Wansink and Sobal, 20072, for one piece of data, and then makes the 35,000 claim immediately after. This is flawed at best, and actively malicious at worst.
This blog post by John Dabell points out that, despite it being referenced often, there does not appear to be any reliable primary source for the information:
So, where does this figure actually come from?
Err, out of fresh air it seems because there doesn’t seem to be any credible source for this number even though it is widely used just like in this Microsoft video
This post on Stack Exchange points out several other sources making this claim without any research backing it up.
This list’s hierarchy is based on the sources that an article may reference. It does not appear that the chain of sources was followed for any of these. As mentioned above, flawed and ignorant at best, actively malicious at worst. ↩
Mindless eating: The 200 daily food decisions we overlook I have not reviewed any of the claims in this paper ↩