Give Now

Noon Edition

Decision Fatigue May Be Slowing You Down

Multiple choice answer sheet.

Photo: Lauren Brown (Flickr)

High numbers of sequential choices can lead to mental depletion.

We make thousands of choices each day: What to wear, what to eat, where to park. But some research shows making too many decisions can be exhausting — and might even lead to bad choices.

It’s called “decision fatigue.” A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found judges were more likely to make more favorable rulings in similar cases early in the day or if they took a break to eat a sandwich first.

This week on Noon Edition we’ll take a closer look at decision fatigue and its effects. We’ll talk with a Monroe County judge and experts who study decision making to see if the choices you make might be slowing you down.

You can join us for a live chat at WFIU.ORG/NoonEdition, follow us on Twitter at Noon Edition or call into the program at 812-855-0811, or toll-free at 1-877-285-WFIU (9348).

Noon Edition airs Friday at 12 p.m.


Dr. Peter Todd, Professor, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Indiana University

Jonathan Levav, Associate Professor of Business, Stanford University

Dr. Ed Hirt, Professor, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Indiana University

Honorable Mary Ellen Diekhoff, Judge, Monroe County Circuit Court, Division V


  • Colin G

    This is the first time I’ve actually listened to the program at length, and I think, honestly, you’ve done a huge disservice to Bloomington as a whole with this particular episode. Bringing in an academic researcher and having a potential subject of his or her research study comment on the study without actually reading through it is just embarrassing. There are established protocols to research and the scientific method, and whether or not Dr. Levav’s study is credible is up to the academic community and not a group of yokels on the radio. Putting him on the defensive shows very poor taste. You may as well have been Fox News from what I heard this afternoon. I hope that you will make better decisions on how to properly conduct a discussion.

Stay Connected

What is RSS? RSS makes it possible to subscribe to a website's updates instead of visiting it by delivering new posts to your RSS reader automatically. Choose to receive some or all of the updates from Noon Edition:

Support For Indiana Public Media Comes From

About Noon Edition

Search Noon Edition

Noon Edition is on Twitter