Making decisions esl video lesson

Stones, hand with a ball, two people, clock

Decisions questions

  • How do you usually make decisions?
  • Do you regret making some decisions?
  • What influences your decisions?
  • How much time do you spend on making a decision?
  • What can be modern ways of decision making?
  • What type of a decision maker do you think you are?
    • The charismatic
    • The deep thinker
    • The skeptic
    • The follower

Key video vocabulary

to get conditioned

you are in a rut

to make decisions by chance

Decision making video exercises

Complete the phrases in the picture below with multiple ideas

Spin the wheel and make a decision what to do at home today!

What decisions does the woman in the picture have to make?

Decision making text

The same decisions

The topic of this lecture is decision-making. How do people make decisions. And the best way I think to make decisions that’s what the lecture is about. Yes, now I think that it’s not possible it’s just impossible to get all the information you need to make a decision. But I think it’s only possible to get about 20% 30% of the information. The second thing is as we grow up, as we go from child to adult we get conditioned from our parents, from our schools, from the government. We get to think in a certain way. And we get to like some things and not like some things. You’re different from me because of where you came from. And because of this it’s very difficult to make decisions in a different way. You’ll tend to make the decisions in the same way.

New decisions

So I don’t know if you agree with me or not, but I think that making decisions rationally or intuitively is a waste of time. First of all, the problem is that you’re in a rut. You’re kind of conditioned. So how can you get out of the rut and make different decisions. It’s one problem. How it’s very easy instead of making rational decisions you make decisions by chance. You let chance make decisions for you. And it’s very easy way of doing this and that’s to use this.

It’s easy

Okay here are my reasons for doing this. First of all, it’s quick and it’s easy. Second, it’s not stressful. Ordinary decision making is very stressful. It takes a long time. Oh, shall I not go? What should I do? Very stressful bad for your heart, isn’t it? So it’s quick, it’s not stressful. And it’s possible that you can do something that you would never have done before. Life is dangerous anyway.

Pure chance

Your life is decided by chance anyway. The people you meet, you meet by chance. I met my girlfriend and my wife by chance and it changed my life this way. I could have met somebody else and I could have changed that way. It was pure chance that I met her at that time. Most of the things that happened to us are chance. So why not use chance to make decisions.

In control of your life?

Well why not? Good question, isn’t it? Why not is because most of us want to believe that we are deciding. You want to believe that you’re you’re deciding what to do, don’t you? You want to believe that you’re in control of your life. Actually you are not. So accept it and throw the dice.


Discussion questions

  1. Why do we get conditioned?
  2. How to get out of the rut?
  3. Would you make decisions by chance? What kind of decisions?
  4. How do you determine your life goals?
  5. How do you make a decision which clothes to wear?
  6. How do you decide what to eat?
  7. What decisions does a minimalist do every day?
  8. Can everyday decisions influence environment and climate change?
  9. Would you like to have automatic decision-making software in the future? What would it look like? How would it make decisions?
  10. How would you decide who to marry?
  11. How to make good decisions and become successful in your professional life?
  12. How do you choose what kind of jobs to have? Or skills to develop?
  13. If you want to start a business, how do you decide what kind of business?
  14. Where would you like to travel to? Why?
  15. Is the easiness of making decisions connected with character and personality?
  16. Where would you like to live in the city or countryside? Why?

Additional listening videos

Key making decisions vocabulary

we get conditioned from..
making decisions rationally or intuitively is a waste of time
the problem is that you’re in a rut
you get out of the rut and make different decisions
you make decisions by chance
Your life is decided by chance anyway
It was pure chance
why not use chance to make decisions.
you’re in control of your life

Learn more about methods for making trivial decisions!

Learn more phrases about making decisions with a British Council Business English listening lesson!

Published by Polina

English teacher, cultural explorer and Korean&Slovenian language learner

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