IELTS Writing Task 2 Sample Essay #3: Too Many Choices
Some people believe that nowadays we have too many choices.
To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement?
Affording a plethora of choices to consumers has always been deemed a source of pride for the current capitalist economy and its proponents. Critics of this aspect of capitalism argue that, at some point, choices become too many and, hence, inhibit one’s ability to make decisions. I completely agree with that assessment and believe that people in this day and age are presented with too many choices, which are, more often than not, a negative consequence of living in a post-industrial economy.
Firstly, many choices are not real or consequential in our lives. For instance, when walking down the cereal aisle at the grocery store, one cannot help but think that the wide variety of cereal is not variety in fact. Rather, it is the same processed wheat or corn that is flavoured, coloured, or packaged in different ways without any significant change to quality in most cases. Having a smaller range of cereal to choose from seems to be a reasonable expectation in this regard.
The head-spinning number of choices with minimal differences can also be a source of anxiety for a potential customer. A person interested in buying a car has to do weeks of research and test drives, at the end of which they cannot be absolutely certain about their choice. There are simply too many factors to consider, and they can easily overwhelm a buyer, who does not possess technical knowledge. All an average customer needs is a car with a reasonable number of features and a good level of safety to get them from point A to point B, and most cars can easily render that service.
Some may argue that the existence of too many choices is a desirable phenomenon as it manifests the freedom of choice and the emphasis on individuality; however, I believe that making choices is not the only avenue for expressing individuality; rather, being able to make much more significant decisions in life or being free from government surveillance can be a more marked expression of individuality.
In sum, I believe that the time and mental energy that is devoted to making these inconsequential choices are not really worth it. As human beings, we only get one chance at life, and it would be a shame to waste our valuable time fretting over which product to choose from and unending array of options.