Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Satisfice, Don't Maximize

Sometimes the perfect can be the enemy of the good:
People who reported exhaustive search in shopping and leisure were called maximizers, because they tried hard to get the best. Those who engaged in a limited search and settled quickly with the first alternative that was satisfactory or "good enough" were called satisficers. Satisficers were reported to be more optimistic and have higher self-esteem and life satisfaction, whereas maximizers excelled in depression, perfectionism, regret, and self-blame.
From chapter 1 of Gut Feelings: The Intelligence of the Unconscious by Gerd Gigerenzer.

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