Too Much Choice


When I go to the supermarket, the increasing range of choice in everything from cereal to cat food seems to end up with a predictable set of reactions.

If I'm full of energy, then curiosity inspires me to try something different.

If I'm tired, then it's 'same old', buying out of habit. But when I see something unfamiliar and there are thirty different varieties on offer, I'm just as likely to pass - and not buy anything! How do I know which is best?

Too much choice is paralysing.

It's the same when we ask people 'what' they want to be. Future career options will include jobs that don't even exist when the question is asked, so how can you know?

Perhaps, then, a better question around making choices is not 'What do you want', but rather 'Who do you want to be?'

This can apply as much to a trip to the supermarket as it does to a career. Who I want to be, refines my choices of groceries - do I want to be thrifty? adventurous? healthy? green? Who I want to be refines my work choices - do I want to be in a job? a career? or a calling?

This makes it much easier to start generating manageable options. It means too that I'm making conscious choices, rather than living on auto-pilot, or worse, living by other people's view of what's best for me.

Jenny Magee


Trainer, coach and consultant, Jenny Magee (BEd, DipTchg, DipSLT) works with organizations to raise awareness of diversity in all its richness and has over 25 years experience as a champion of diverse workplaces and positive, productive partnerships.

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