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Choose? Or Decide?

Is it just me, or does the word “decide” feel more ominous than the word “choose”?

“Choose” feels lighter and more whimsical to me. I like that.

Maybe “choose” causes us to focus on the possibilities of the thing chosen, and “decide” makes us consider the possibilities of the things not chosen.

“Choose” promises adventure, and “decide” threatens regret.

As I consider what to do in the coming year, I think I will “choose some projects that appeal to me” and completely avoid “deciding what to do”.

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  1. Posted December 31, 2012 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    I think decisions conjure up permanency that limits freedom where choice allows for life’s surprises to influence you and generate new choices.

    That being said, epic decisions can free you from the bonds of accumulating confusions and set you on your course. Or, should we call that a choice as well?


  2. Posted January 2, 2013 at 11:09 am | Permalink

    Hi Jim,

    I’ve done a lot of thinking about this. Here are a couple of builds on your post:

    “Decide” comes from the same roots as homicide, suicide, and genocide. It means to kill off alternatives. As Carmelo says, there are times to do that.

    I like the language used by some investors, entrepreneurs, and executives — to “take” a decision as opposed to make a decision. It indicates awareness and care in killing off alternatives.

    And generally, I prefer choosing an alternative or path for now as it does not kill off alternatives.


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