Toilet Paper, Dating And The Paradox Of Choice

by Yvonne Chase on April 15, 2018

Couldn’t Deal
The other day, I went to CVS to buy toilet paper and almost left with nothing. There were so many options and so many different price points that I just couldn’t deal. Charmin, Cottonelle, Scott, Seventh Generation, Angel Soft, Quilted Northern and the CVS brand were all staring at me and that’s not the entire list.

Best Quality
Some packs were 2-ply with 6 rolls while others were 1-ply with 12 rolls. Other brands had 4-2 ply rolls at a lower price point. The CVS brand offered a promotion plus a deep discount but was their brand the best quality? I walked up and down the aisle looking at the rolls, price point, and quality. Oh, there was even a brand that came with no inner cardboard tube. I’d never seen that so now that was in the running.

Take It Anymore
If I didn’t need toilet paper, I promise you I would’ve run out of CVS without it. When I couldn’t decide, I asked the sales associate for his best recommendation and that is what I bought.

Toilet Paper
Shopping for toilet paper reminds me of the plight single people face today when dating. We have so many options that some of us don’t choose. And even when we make a choice, we wonder if we made the best choice. 

Better Options
FOMO (fear of missing out) kicks in. We want to make sure we don’t miss out on something better so we don’t choose. FOMO keeps us on the lookout for better options. Watch the video below and we’ll continue after…

Hard To Focus
Today we have an abundance of dating apps like Tinder, Bumble, and Coffee Meets Bagel to name a few plus a slew of online dating sites. It’s hard to focus on one person. We can’t even focus when on a date because we’re wondering if someone new swiped left or if there’s a message waiting in our inbox. We’re distracted!

Stress And Frustration
I’m sure the apps and online dating sites were created to make it easier to meet, greet and find romantic love, however, it seems the abundance of options has created stress and frustration.


More Is Less
In his book, The Paradox Of Choice, Why More Is Less, author Barry Schwartz shares a funny story about going to The Gap to buy a pair of regular jeans. The salesperson met him and asked what kind of jeans he wanted and then rattled off a list that included slim fit, easy fit, relaxed fit, baggy, extra baggy, stonewashed, acid washed or distressed, button fly, zipper fly, faded or regular?

No Longer Sure
He was stunned and sputtered out something along the lines of I just want a regular pair of jeans, you know, the kind that used to be the only kind. The trouble with all the options available to him is he was no longer sure he wanted “regular jeans.” In the end, he chose relaxed fit since they were the closest to a regular pair of jeans.

Question Yourself
The same thing happens to single people. You have a solid idea in your head of the kind of person you want to meet until you get out there amongst all the options and begin to question yourself. Do I really want to be with that kind of person? Here’s more from Barry:

As a culture, we are enamored of freedom, self-determination, and variety, and we are reluctant to give up any of our options. But clinging tenaciously to all the choices available to us contributes to bad decisions, to anxiety, stress, and dissatisfaction—even to clinical depression.

Does increased opportunities for choice actually make people happier? Conventional wisdom says the more choices people have, the better off they are, that the best way to get good results is to have very high standards, and that itʼs always better to have a way to back out of a decision than not. Conventional wisdom is wrong, at least when it comes to what satisfies us in the decisions we make.

Less Content
Singles can’t commit because of high standards and not wanting to settle. I’ve seen this repeatedly especially among men. The more choices he has the less content he is with the woman he chose, no matter how great she is. 

Throw Up
Today when I learned of Barbara Bush’s failing health, I Googled her to learn more and saw this quote, “I married the first man I ever kissed. When I tell this to my children, they just about throw up.”

The Good Ol Days
Gone are the days of marrying the first man you kiss. I’d say those were the good ol days. It’s safe to say people who dated before our generation of options had it much easier than we do today. Back then, people often met through friends, family, church or a recommendation from someone in their close-knit community. They were able to build relationships and marry. While we have more options, we have less committed relationships and more hooking up. 

Water Your Own Grass
So what’s the solution? If you want to be successful in today’s dating scene, turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to the various options and make a choice. Once you make your choice, know that the grass is not greener on the other side, the grass is greener where it’s watered. Water your own grass and ignore the options otherwise, you WILL miss out on someone amazing.

Something to think about…

What say you? Have more options complicated dating? If you’re not dating in this generation what was dating like for you? Are you glad you are not a part of today’s dating scene? What advice do you have for singles seeking a committed relationship while swimming in a sea of options?

Here are 2 things I’d like you to do now:

1. Leave a comment below

2. Share this post if you like it


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