In a world brimming with choices, I often find myself torn between settling for good enough’ and striving for the best. Barry Schwartz’s concept of satisficers” and maximisers” sheds light on this dilemma. Satisficers are content with a choice that meets their needs, while maximisers chase the best, often leading to decision paralysis and dissatisfaction.

But here’s the twist: our obsession with maximisation, whether in choosing the best products or striving for personal excellence, doesn’t always equate to happiness. Studies suggest that maximisers, despite their professional success, often feel less happy and more prone to negative emotions.

In The Good-Enough Life,” Avram Alpert argues against this relentless pursuit of greatness. He suggests dismantling societal hierarchies to appreciate values like kindness and empathy as much as we do scientific or creative brilliance. This shift can lead to a more fulfilling and less competitive existence. Something I should take heed on, I guess.

Even in personal areas like parenthood, the maximisation mindset can be counterproductive. Being a good parent or friend isn’t about achievements but about presence, kindness, and authenticity. Breaking the cycle of perfectionism can lead to more genuine, fulfilling relationships.

As we step into the new year, it’s worth pondering: instead of striving for an unattainable ideal, why not embrace being good enough’? It’s a radical thought, but perhaps the key to a more contented life lies in accepting ourselves as we are, imperfections and all.


Andrew Backhouse is a Yorkshire-based artist working with time-based media and digital collage. He is a self-confessed radio geek and he hopes to share his wonder. He also wants to share his naivety and enthusiasm for finding something interesting. Henri Chopin, AGF, and RuPaul influence Andrew’s artistic enquiry. Documenting “The new shiny thing,” Andrew tries to share his excitement for it. But, he also asks about its authenticity and worth.

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