- to make a final choice or judgment about
- to select as a course of action
- to infer on the basis of evidence
"The Latin root of the word decide literally means “to cut off.”
When we make a true decision, we CUT OFF all other options and go ALL IN."
How to Make Good Decision, From Ben Franklin | The Art of Manliness
“My way is to divide half a sheet of paper by a line into two columns;
writing over the one Pro and over the other Con.
Then during three or four days’ consideration,
I put down under the different heads short hints of the different motives,
that at different time occur to me, for or against the measure.
When I have thus got them altogether in one view, I endeavor to estimate their respective weights; and where I find two, one on each side, that seem equal, I strike them both out.
If I judge some two reasons con equal to some three reasons pro, I strike out five;
and thus proceeding, I find where the balance lies; and if after a day or two of further consideration, nothing new that is of importance occurs on either side, I come to a determination accordingly.”
A "spreadsheet variation" of Ben Franklin's method:
- Make your columns.
- List the important elements of your decision.
- List the importance factor of each element
- Grade the choices in relation to each element.
- Multiply the importance factor by the grades for each choice
- Add up the totals
Here is a great book that explore making decisions from many interesting angles