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Similarly, research on online dating performed by Alison Lenton and Barbara Fasolo indicated that participants presented with more potential partners did not experience any greater emotional satisfaction than participants presented with fewer options.
(They were, if anything, more confused about their choices.) These findings do not only pertain to the world of dating.
Fortunately, the majority of people do not seem to share my particular troubles with speed dating.
Yet new research does point out a different dating problem: being confronted with a large number of choices can make it harder to make a good decision.
If you’re still not entirely convinced, consider the fact that you are able to judge the appeal of a face in less than 13 milliseconds.
That’s right, research strongly suggests that your mind has decided on the attractiveness of a face before you are even consciously aware of the fact that you have seen one.
In particular, people tend to assume that it is always a good thing to think long and hard about everything, consciously deliberating different potential outcomes and rationally weighing different pros and cons.
However, an emerging field of research is questioning this traditional view.
In short, we use all kinds of heuristics on a daily basis and apparently we do so for a good reason.Well, several experiments have shown that when shoppers are presented with either an extensive or limited amount of potential consumer choices (e.g.chocolates, jam flavors) more people actually end up making purchases, and are happier, when the choice environment only offers a limited set of options.Similarly, another study showed that when German students were asked to evaluate pairs of American colleges, the German students predicted their relative ranking with better accuracy than their American peers (based solely on their recognition of the university’s name).Thus, in some cases, having limited knowledge can actually lead to more accurate outcomes.