Deals, Distractions, and Decision Making

Don’t let your short-term self hijack your long-term self.

I’m writing this on Cyber Monday 2022, and the FOMO vibes are strong today. And yes, there are some great deals out there (here’s a rundown of some of my favorites). And yes, there will be many other opportunities that pop up in our lives that we only have a small amount of time to act on.

I’m not just talking about flash sales on vacuum cleaners. It could be a job, a chance to make an important connection, an adorable puppy who needs a new home, or any of the hundreds of MEGA-MONDO-ONE-DAY-ONLY-DISCOUNTS!!!! that you’ll see in your feed today.

Some of these opportunities could be legitimately beneficial. MOST of them, however, are distractions at best and total life derailments at worst.

We are faced with so much stimulation, and we have to make thousands of decisions every day, big and small. Advertisers and tech companies have mastered the art of capturing our attention and forcing us into (perceived) gun-to-the-head decisions. And you might be a small business owner or marketer, and you play the game yourself. But that doesn’t mean you are any less susceptible. In fact, we might be MORE at risk because we are very opportunity oriented.

I caution you and encourage you to stay focused. More importantly – have something to focus on. Cast a vision for your life. Set long-term goals. Pick a point on the horizon to steer toward, and then filter your short-term decisions through your long-term lens.

Will saying “yes” to Decision No. 56092238 ultimately get you closer to where you want to be, or will it take you off course?

I’m not saying there isn’t any room to be impulsive once in a while. You don’t need to schedule an impromptu ice cream run with the kids a month out in advance, or run a deep financial analysis before ordering a new pair of socks. But remember to check in with your long-term self on a regular basis to make sure you’re still on track.

Get ready. After you read this (thanks for actually reading this by the way!), you’re going to keep scrolling or hop into a different feed full of ads for Cyber Monday deals. Heck, I might be throwing some of those ads at you myself. There’s nothing wrong with saving money on a vacuum cleaner. Just don’t lose sight of your primary goals, and make sure you’re doing what you need to do to keep your house in order, or else you won’t have any floors to clean.

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