Chip and Dan Heath have come out with another outstanding book:  Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life.  And who doesn’t want to make better choices?  The Heath Brothers present many examples of how we, as humans, don’t often get it right.  We have common decision-making biases.  For example, once we believe an idea is the best, we will practice confirmation bias.  This means we will look for support for our decision, not the pros and the cons.  Francis Bacon (1561-1626)  and others through out history have noted that as humans we have a tendency to confirm what we want to believe or hangout with people that believe what we do.  We will go out of our way to look for evidence that confirms our ideas and avoid evidence that would contradict them. 

The Heath Brothers have boiled it down to the WRAP Process:

  • Widen Your Options.  If the answer is do this or do that, your options are really just yes or no.  Think:  what if I did that and this? 
  • Reality-Test Your Assumptions.  Sparking constructive disagreement, consider the opposite, take challenges and make mistakes.
  • Attain Distance.  Short term emotions often make bad long term decisions.  Ask what would your successor do?  Use the 10/10/10 process.  One example of the this would be how will you feel in 10 minutes; 10 days; 10 weeks?  Or 10 days/10 months/10 years?  It is important at this point to know your core priorities.
  • Prepare to be Wrong.  Mentally run your idea and see what it will look like in the future.  Set up some mental tripwires.

This book is worthy of your time and do check out your local library . . . mine had it in audio and ebook.  Decisive is just that – being decisive in your decision making process and it is an entertaining read.  The one page synopsis is here.