The 5th inescapable truth for a prosperous life in the INentionomics Blueprint is to Develop Intentional Success Habits.
Changing not-so-good habits to intentional-success-habits is a simple process, not so easy, but certainly a simple process, once you understand how and of course why. And one of the more dynamic processes you can put in place is what I refer to as Intentional Life Defaults that almost force you to opt out of them, rather than try to force you to opt in to them.
As part of my research into the validity of this approach, which I will explain in more detail in a moment, I’ve been exploring the pros and cons of opt in systems vs opt out systems.
Organ donation (and I realise this is an emotional issue for many people) is just one of many examples.
What I’ve learned is that it’s only around 1-2% of people who die in hospital who can ever become potential organ donors – apparently you have to die in a very particular set of circumstances. However, what’s surprising to me is that of that small percentage, less than 60% of families will give permission for organ and tissue donation to proceed.
While this is only my opinion (and I know it is not shared by everyone… but this is my blog), I reckon Australia should introduce an ‘Opt Out’ system.
In a paper written by the head of Liver and Kidney Surgical Transplant at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, Luc Delriviere, and the manager of DonateLife WA, Hal Boronovskis highlights that “The flaw of the current system is despite 77% of the population willing to be an organ or tissue donor, only 39.28% of the eligible population has registered.”
I understand the opposing viewpoint that introducing an opt-out system may not cause a significant increase in organ donation because the final decision is left to family members – regardless of the decision and wish of the organ donor.
However, I reckon give it a crack – the people who are waiting in hospitals or confined to their beds at home just waiting endlessly for that phone call need something to be done. (And please, I do say this with respect and support for your right for your personal choices and religious beliefs)
Leaving the organ donation debate for you to consider, here’s why I reckon it’s a great example of Intentional Life Defaults.
Opting In to something takes just as much effort as it does to Opt Out of something. And when something takes effort, we tend to ‘default’ to what’s easiest.
So rather than make the effort to opt-in, we choose not to. Rather than make the effort to ‘opt-out’ we choose not to… unless we have a significant incentive, motivation or reason to do so.
How does this relate to our every-day life and our opportunities to live more happy, flourishing and prosperous lives?
One strategy to help you implement the 5th inescapable truth for a prosperous life – to Develop intentional success habits, is to create Intentional Life Defaults that are ‘opt-out’ driven.
Here are just three examples:
Set up automatic saving plans where money is automatically taken from your pay and invested. In that way, you don’t need to make the decision. It’s set for you. And the only way for you to stop this positive habit is to ‘opt-out’ by shutting down the automatic savings plan deduction. But what we know is that once you’ve set it up, it’s a lot harder for you to close it down than to just leave it and let it do all the positive good it can for you.
Fill your fridge and pantry full of healthy options. In that way you will need to ‘opt-out’ of what’s ready and easy for you to cook with or snack on and get in your car and drive somewhere to grab the sugar hit, or the comfort hit that you think you need.
Set different music or sound alarms on your Smartphone at specifically allocated times through the day to remind you to: hydrate, reflect, plan, exercise, socialise, snack-healthily, stretch, meditate or other life enriching activities. When you implement this as a series of mindful intentional interrupts, you’re giving yourself the best chance to be reminded to take positive intentional action that will add to your sense of well-being.
And just in case you think I don’t see the paradox that to do any of the above you need to ‘opt-in’ first… I do. However, an initial set of opt-ins to establish Intentional Life Defaults where it’s tougher for you to avoid what’s good for you rather than making it easier to choose what’s potentially not-so-good for you, is well worth giving it a crack.