The benefits of being closed-minded

Whatever choice you make, a teacher told me, is bound to be disappointing. Even if you get precisely what you want, your satisfaction with that choice will never be as exciting as the possibility of having options to choose from. He was right of course. And consequently I struggle with decision-making, because each necessary decision forecloses as many opportunities as it opens up.

But now, whether through conscious choice or through the sheer momentum of paths taken, many of the major decisions of my life are over. I’ve hardened into the life I will lead, and I’m old enough to look back on the flexibility of youth with nostalgia. And while I sometimes miss greatly the excitement of endless possibility, I also find that there can be value in having a mindset that is to some extent “hardened.”

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