Title: "The Art of Making Good Decisions"

Author: Philip Kimble

Philip Kimble states that the average person makes more than 30,000 conscious decisions every day, which range from what to eat and wear to big ones on which car to buy, who to ask on a date and career moves. In his book of 160 pages, he shares his simple system of breaking decisions down into manageable small parts.

The first part called Booleans is named for a famous English mathematician: It is a term which has moved into computer logic as an item that has either a value of "1" or "0" or in layman's terms, either "yes" or "no."

Kimble writes that Booleans are absolutes, which he limits to three. Next are preferences, then objectives that are practical to any decision, followed by the subjective or heart. Kimble says this is also called "hunch, gut feeling, the spirit or intuition." He gives many examples of how this works, including college career choices, narrowing down the qualities of boyfriends, and buying a car.

In the boyfriend dilemma, Helen's three Booleans are no criminal record, hygienically sound and good moral character which both Tom and Bill pass. Next come preferences which Kimble says should be limited to half dozen or so. Helen's included career stability, sense of humor, kind to animals, ambition and financially sound, which were each rated on scale of 1 to 3. Since Tom was currently unemployed, according to her financial preferences he ranked lower than Bill in three but higher in the remaining two. Oh well, she might go directly to the subjective and marry Tom anyway.

Car buying can begin with 128,790 possibilities when considering make, models, color and affordability. Through this mathematical system, Kimble reduces this to a manageable number of 12. He gives a myriad of numbers but makes the system easy to understand with the use of charts. He says that major pitfalls occur when we get the sequence out of order, that the subjective (heart) often rules first and thus it and the objective are often in unresolved conflict, which may lead to no decision.

Kimble gives readers examples from corporate and personal relationships, major purchases, education, plus more that many people face with various results. However, he cautions over and over to keep the sequence in this exact order: 1-Booleans, 2-preferences, 3-objective and 4-subjective.

The book can help bring clarity and sense to decisions. Some readers may get bogged down with the mathematics but Kimble's graphs, advice and anecdotes are lighthearted and may aid or interest those facing decisions or those wishing to look back on those already made.

Virginia Luger lives in Bismarck.