Imagine that you are standing in an apple orchard deciding which of the many rows of apples to pick. How do you base your decision?
Most research into this type of decision making focuses on how the brain uses visual features, such as shape, color, and size. However, what happens when you factor in the effort that is required to pick that apple?
Which apple do you pick? Do you pick the one that is easy and on the lowest branch or reach for the one at the top of the tree?
When the option is more difficult to get, research tells us that it’s more likely you’ll take the path of least resistance. You’ll even use rationalization, distraction, blame, or denial. For example, you may rationalize that the apples at the top in fact are probably rotten. Why? Because it takes more effort to get to the apples at the top, making the low-hanging fruit the path of least resistance.
Studies that have been done on this type of decision making suggest that the low-hanging fruit often looks the ripest. Not because it is, but because it requires less effort.
However, a small minority of people will choose to change their actions, habits or behaviors rather than take the path of least resistance. They realize that even though things are getting harder, they resolve to overcome the hurdles.
They choose to develop and step into their higher self rather than resist it. They put in the extra effort to reach the apples at the very top of the tree by choosing not to take the easy way out.
Which apple will you choose?