In math, there’s one right answer. 1 + 1 = 2 and that’s it. We like to think that when we’re making a logical decision, this same rule of “only one right answer” applies. Most of the time, it doesn’t. If only life was as neat as grade school math.
Most of the time, there’s actually a range of “sort of right” answers. Some are “good enough,” others are “pretty good.” We’re looking for “best fit.” A store might have a lot of pants, there’s a big difference between finding the perfect pair and picking blindly. This is especially relevant when we’re helping others make decisions.
If a person wants to lose weight, there are a ton of diet and exercise options and combinations. There’s no one answer, but the best fit will be the option they can stick to and accomplish their goal.
When you order food from a new restaurant, you look at the menu for something familiar or interesting. The best fit is the one that sounds most appealing for dinner tonight.
When we plug an address into our GPS and see the normal route is backed up from construction, we look at the alternates. The best fit is the one that makes the most sense in context.
Solving for “best fit” means we are looking for logic and not demanding it. Once we understand the rules and preferences being applied, we can focus on creating confidence in the final choice. When we take the pressure off of being perfect and focus on a good option, we, and those we serve, can get a lot more done.
Now, sometimes we’ll have to switch diet strategies, or end up with a meal we hate, or get stuck waiting for the GPS to recalculate for the hundredth time, or… But, if we were choosing from a range to begin with, we already understand we had and still have other options.
Avoid the trap of only one right answer. Always look for the range of sort of right answers to choose from. Then, go with confidence.