Thursday, May 29, 2008

Maximizer vs. Suficiser

I was listening to NPR on my way home from school today, and I found out that this man, Barry Schwartz, has figured out why us Calders are happier than other people. He did a study of college graduates (summarized here) where he found that people who feel it necessary to maximize their choices, as in seek out and evaluate every possible choice and choose the best one, are far less satisfied than the people who follow the Calder motto of "seek, find, select, purchase," as in those that look until they find a choice that they are reasonably satisfied with, choose, and don't look back.

As I was listening, he talked about his theory that the reason people are so dissatisfied with their marriages is that people tend to be more satisfied with non-reversible decisions. Sad huh?

His research did find that the "Maximizers" made 20% more money but were "more pessimistic, stressed, tired, anxious, worried, overwhelmed and depressed."


Caitlin said...

That is so fascinating. The "Calder Way" took me a long time to get used to after I married Chad. I remember that we decided to get a car and a day later Chad was already to go buy one. I was like "What? Don't you have to think about it for at least 4 to 6 months?" It literally takes my parents a year to buy a car and that's what I was used to. I think the "Calder Way" is a much more healthy outlook on life however I am still trying to adapt to it.

Anonymous said...

The other day I had to buy long pants for Tyler. We were at the mall and I couldn't tell if the loose fit size 3's would fit or the reg size 4's. The saleslady said- well why don't you try them on. So I dragged Nathan and Tyler into a fitting room which upon Nathan announced that we'd never been in one of these before. And was completely blown away that we were taking off our clothes and trying on clothes that we hadn't bought yet. That's because their mom lives the Calder Way.

Allison said...

Jack loves the try on room. When I'm trying on clothes he wants to try on everything I've tried on right after me...pants, shirts, etc. He models in front of the mirror. Tristan always tells me whether or not he likes what I'm trying on. I take their opinions with a grain of salt. Their idea of fashion is a Spongebob tank top.

Allison said...

Ooh.. one time Brian wanted to buy shorts and we went to THREE different malls. That's right... malls. Umm.. I might have mentioned that ALL THE MALLS HAVE THE SAME STUFF!

Say it together, "Seek, find, select and purchase."

Anne & Aaron said...

One time aaron wanted to buy a rug and i swear we went to over 30 stores. I wanted to cry. On top of everything we didn't even get a rug. It was the worst day ever. I'm still trying to adapt to his very thorough buy once keep it forever lifestyle. Now I get in trouble if I don't try clothes on cause invariably I won't like it, I"ll have to take it back - or I'll just never wear it. But I hate trying on clothes, herein lies the problem.

ps. Looking back at Caitlin's comment I wonder- how come its us adapting??

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