The Paradox of Choice
Have you ever opened your wardrobe to find that even though it's full, there is nothing you feel like you want to wear? Have you ever looked for new holiday pieces online just to find the more swimming suits you look at the less you know what you want? It can be overwhelming and confusing and, in the end, whatever you settle for may not feel like the right choice.
You are not alone – we have all fallen victims to the Paradox of Choice. It's a thing. Having choice is great – why be boring? Having a few options to choose from can feel strangely liberating and can encourage responsibility for our own choices. It makes us confident and self-assured. It keeps us excited about the choice we have made.
Interestingly too much choice has pretty much the opposite effect. Overwhelming amount of items or services to choose from can lead to dissatisfaction with whatever item we have
It is also known to cause heightened expectations as you scroll through more and more choices and of course there can only be so much colour, shape and functionality in a product and certain amount of quality in a service. This applies to things we already have.
Let’s put the Paradox of Choice to the Test.
Imagine you have 3 outfits to choose from for your next big event. You only have these 3 outfits. You have them because you really love them. You can easily decide, which of the three you are going to wear. Based on your criteria this could be the most appropriate outfit for the type of event you are going to or perhaps the one, which makes you feel the most confident/relaxed/carefree – you name it. Choice of three is good – just one outfit available may feel boring and two create a dilemma.
So, what if you don’t have 3 outfits. You have a full wardrobe of dresses, skirts, tops – all smart and trendy and you need to pick just one. Isn’t it suddenly more overwhelming? How do you choose and will you feel that you have made the right call? I bet it felt easier with the choice of 3!
This is why slow fashion and the concept of a slow fashion wardrobe works well. It is good to be able to add to it occasionally. Choice is limited but there nonetheless and your wardrobe is filled with pieces you cherish and didn’t buy impulsively for £5.
This is one of the reasons I don’t do overwhelmingly big collections. I put thought in every design and I don’t want to overwhelm anyone with dozens of styles with slight differences – which is something that is done a lot on the high street. The pieces are versatile and can work paired easily with other clothes.
So next time you look for something – beware of the Paradox of Choice and beware of looking through countless catalogues of similar styles. Choose from few options and enjoy what you choose. It will save you a lot of time and frustration and you are sure to feel like you have made a better choice!
Keep stylish and - as always -
Keep Sailing Forward, Everyone!