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Choice in Our Life

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  • Pages: 4
  • Word count: 823
  • Category: Life

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Does choice affect happiness is a question that many in a business ask. I believe that there is a limit to choice before it becomes negative. This includes the dynamic nature of happiness and there are many different examples of negatives in our culture; However, it is important to understand happiness first.

Recently due to marketers trying to find what makes people happy they did a poll on happiness. They found that happiness is dynamic and changes. This is important, because they found that, specifically, there is a calm happiness and excited happiness. They found that there is more excitement found in the future and calm in the present; However, it was also found that it depends not only on focus, but also on age. The older one is the calmer they view happiness. With emphasis on happiness being found in multiple areas like psychologists, economics, and sociologists businesses have been trying to emphasize happiness with their own products. Mogilner listed a few of the businesses and their new slogan along with happiness. “Nesquik claims, “You can’t buy happiness, but you can drink it.” Dunkin’ Donuts promotes a breakfast sandwich as “The happiest sandwich on Earth.” Nivea offers a body lotion, “Happy Sensation.” Hugo Boss offers “Orange, the fragrance of happiness,” and Clinique similarly offers a perfume named “Clinique Happy.””. These are only a few, but are a good example of how businesses are trying to incorporate happiness. The reason why this is important is because it is important to know what is being influenced.

In a world where choice is emphasised and is synonymous with freedom, even if by mistake, it is important to understand if choice affects happiness. Currently the world has many options for everything. Barry Schwartz talked about his grocery store and how it has 175 different salad dressings. He mentions that even the electronics store he goes to, he could buy six and a half million stereo systems from the amount of components they have. Many around the world believe in the, “Official Dogma.” The official dogma is, as stated by Dean Yeong, “If we want to maximize our happiness, the best way to achieve it is to maximize our freedom.” Both Dean Yeong and Barry Schwartz believe that while choice is good it does not have a direct correlation with happiness and needs moderation. Freedom to them is good, however, their belief is that freedom allows for choice, but it exists without an abundance of choice. They even talk about how choice can have negative impacts.

The easiest example of unhappiness with choice is dissatisfaction via comparison. Dean Yeong mentioned a scenario where choice is almost always a negative. There are five oranges, but only one is the best in the world, and only one can be chosen. After choosing one and even tasting it, one could not compare to another and it will be unknown whether or not it was the best one. This leads to dissatisfaction or regret for the choice made, even if it was the best one. With many choices in the types of oranges, if there was only one previously that they ever bought it would lower the bar to that point for the oranges, however, now the bar is higher because there is 5 and one could be perfect. Another example is paralysis and procrastination. Paralysis comes from an over abundance of choice where the choice is hidden behind the shear size. However Procrastination is knowingly putting things aside. As an example Dean Yeong explained what it would be like if they released 100 different I-phones. The theory is that the sales would go down because people would be unable to decide what they would like and would be paralysed. Most business startups fail because of a lack of focus on one goal or product. This lack of focus could spread and with so many choices, might paralysis the business.

Dean Yeong believes that we are fish in an aquarium. He believes that the size dictates freedom, and some believe it holds them back, but to grow needs a bigger aquarium, however some wish to break the aquarium which would lead to death. Dean Yeong believes that if they focus on one business idea or goal and make sure that is solid before moving on a business could be better for it. Be content with what you have and what you cannot change. Barry Schwartz mentioned that depression has risen in the last generation. He stated that part of that is the level of choice. The previous one size fits all policy meant that when anyone tried only one thing because it was the only thing they could just blame the place or world. Now with the expectations raised as said before in makes perfection the expectation so it is almost always not going to be perfect. Now with the multiple choices the only logical fault on why you have the “wrong” one is yourself.

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