Analysis Paralysis

Given two choices, A and B, which would you pick? Some people pick C by not making a choice.

If one can not decide, one can go back and forth between A and B without coming any closer to a decision. This is called analysis paralysis.

I once saw this happen in a game. One player had analysis paralysis very badly. It did not show at first, but as soon as the game got involved, he slowed right down. The other three players would be done in five minutes or less total, and he would take much longer.

Finally, they went off and played a game of the same game with another set. They finished their entire game, and the slow player was still puzzling over his turn.

Sometimes, decisions are not made, because it would mean losing somehow. Suppose that there are two ways of doing something. A and B each have their advantages and disadvantages. If either A or B were clearly superior, the choice would be easy. However, if the two are close, neither set of supporters may be willing to “give up”. Thus, C (doing nothing) happens.

Not making a decision is almost always wrong.

Go ahead. Decide that I am right or that I am wrong, but please decide!

2 thoughts on “Analysis Paralysis

    1. Gene Wirchenko Post author

      Yes, I have heard of variations.

      I find that either I can refine my decision-in-progress, or I can not do so.

      If I can, then fine. This might involve going through the data more than once but considering factors somewhat differently each time.

      If not, then since I can not tell the difference, either one will do. People who get stuck can not do that.

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