Closing a Few Doors and Having Fewer Options Simplifies Life

The most emailed article in the New York Times today is provocatively titled “The Advantages of Closing a Few Doors.”

As someone who’s gotten stuck by having too many options in my work and social life, I smiled upon reading that Dr. Ariely, who wrote the book Predictably Irrational, says he has made a conscious effort to cancel projects and give away his ideas to colleagues.


Often I can be heard sharing ideas for movie plots, inventions, or a new website or mobile application. Why on my life list, there are lots of ideas that some people may think should be confidential.

Instead I use my public life list and other social venues to spread ideas of things that I want to exist but that I’ve determined I don’t want to spend time or effort on personally. Plenty of ideas remain private on my list; things I may one day want to pursue myself.

Thank you Dr. Ariely for justifying the means to my end! May you all simplify your lives by doing the same. It all comes down to PRIORITIZING how you spend your energy and time.

If for you that means trying to work less, make sure to read some tips on maximizing return on your savings.