“Oh fuck it, let’s see what happens.”
I find myself uttering that phrase (or something similar) increasingly often at the moment. When drowning in potential options, I’ll often just pick one of them and see what happens. Why? Because we’re fooling ourselves if we think we can analyse every situation perfectly.
Western thought is, of course, based around logic. Problems are solved through logic – we deduce the perfect solution. At least in theory.
The problem is that we fool ourselves about our capacity for logic. We think that we can consider an endless number of factors, weigh them all up and come up with the perfect answer. In reality we’re unable to weigh even a few different factors effectively – it’s just too much for our brains to handle.
Take any significant life decision. Most likely you’ll be trying to choose the option that maximises your own happiness and the happiness of the people that matter to you, whilst also keeping in line with your personal idea of what is morally acceptable. Sounds simple enough – just a few things to balance.
Nope! In reality your happiness is determined by an almost infinite number of sub-factors, big and small. Although you may consider many of these factors, there are far too many to take them all into account. You’re sure to miss something.
Accept uncertainty but make things effortless
But who said every decision you make has to be perfect? The fact that you might miss something isn’t necessarily a reason not to analyse. Take choosing a career as an example. Even if you’re unable to figure out for certain which career choice is best, you can take a decent crack at figuring out which ones have the best potential. So logic can certainly have its place.
Where “oh fuck it” comes in is for the close decisions. When the options you’re choosing between are going to be pretty similar in terms of the happiness they bestow on you, “oh fuck it” can be a great choice.
Why? Because the pain of deliberation needs to be taken into account. If you’re going to spend a long time deciding which option is best and then constantly second-guess yourself or beat yourself up for maybe making the wrong choice, surely “oh fuck it” is a better option. Accept uncertainty but make things effortless.
This all ties in to the idea of not grasping after things, focusing instead on just being content with the present moment. Rather than grasping at the perfect solution, accept a good solution and save the mental energy you’ve saved for making the most of the experience.
Can bad things happen with “oh fuck it”? Of course. But bad things happen even when you’ve done everything to analyse the situation!
Be thoughtful and analytical. Take the time to think deeply about important decisions. Wait until you’ve reached your capacity for analysis, when there’s just too many factors to consider. Then “oh fuck it” really comes into its own.
Also published on Medium.