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How Does a T-Shirt Help with... Decision Fatigue?

‘Decision Fatigue’ is one of those fancy buzz-terms that really encapsulates a simple idea: the more decisions we make, the worse they end up being. It reflects an anti-multi-tasking attitude and, in that sense, also ties to the inspiration of our name (if you’re going to do something, then do it well). So, what does ‘decision fatigue’ have to do with a t-shirt? 

For us, finding a “perfect” t-shirt meant one less decision each day. It is undeniably the most versatile article of clothing a man can own, not just based on pairing-options, but also in that it never goes out of style (at least in its most classic form). The key of course was finding a t-shirt whose qualities were so great, that they eliminated the need for considering anything else. Only then, is a decision truly eliminated. Making what to wear a ‘no brainer’ – no decision needed, the choice is clear – is ultimately the bar we measure our Ts against. Obviously, this is subjective, but for us that standard was met.

It has been estimated that the average person makes 35,000 decisions per day1. Studies have proven that our ability to make good decisions reduces, the more decisions we make2. It’s why most of us tend to make better decisions earlier in the day and tend to rely more on impulse as the day progresses. Of course, this may not be all that consequential depending on the importance of a given decision. When decisions being made are of greater impact, however, then limiting the fog becomes all the more critical.

This is why some of the most influential leaders of our time, have been so intentional in eliminating decisions from their day-to-day. Steve Jobs always wore the same black turtle-neck and jeans. Einstein was known to own several variations of the same grey suit. It is not that these individuals didn’t care about what they wore (in Jobs’ case, it became part of his personal brand), but that they recognized once they found an outfit that they liked, it was not worth their brainpower to re-process the decision of what to wear on a daily basis3. The idea of a ‘capsule wardrobe’ is an extension of this thought process – own few, high-quality versatile clothing items to limit your daily wardrobe choices to the items you love and feel good in. Hard to get more versatile than a quality T…

If meaningful decision-making requires making fewer decisions, then it’s easy to see the philosophical argument that it’s also a prerequisite to a more meaningful life. This is why we have embraced the three dots in our name as part of our logo. They serve as a subtle reminder for us to always evaluate our own decisions, knowing why we are making them and doing so to the best of our abilities. If we are doing something, then we want to do it well and with intention. The dots reflect the variable of what we are doing in a given moment. This does not mean we are suggesting that every second of our day should be geared towards achievement and productivity, but that we should strive to get the most out of the moment personally and live it fully. That could be something as simple as appreciating the company of someone else or being aware of the environment around us. 

Of course, we recognize the apparent hypocrisy of saying all this, while making our pitch to sell an article of clothing that is arguably the most overproduced in the world. Adding to that list of options certainly does not seem to align with creating fewer decisions. For us, however, despite the countless variations of men’s t-shirts out there, none met the bar we were seeking. We couldn’t find the “perfect t” for us, and decided it was worth the effort to make it ourselves. We found that in the process of creating our version of the perfect t-shirt, we identified much more meaning to it than what is obvious on the surface. We ended up forming a company that reflects those values. After all, if we were going to create a t-shirt company, then we should strive to do it well…

 

1 http://science.unctv.org/content/reportersblog/choices

2 https://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/21/magazine/do-you-suffer-from-decision-fatigue.html

3 https://www.forbes.com/sites/jacquelynsmith/2012/10/05/steve-jobs-always-dressed-exactly-the-same-heres-who-else-does/?sh=1821666f5f53

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