I hear you about exercising my decision muscles, but I have the opposite problem. I make decisions all day at work, but then I come home and I can't decide what to have for dinner or whether to watch Idol. Why is that I can make choices that affect my career but not my evening?
You are actually suffering from decision fatigue, which, to continue the metaphor, is like the wobbly feeling you get after a particularly tough workout, or in my case, any manual labor whatsoever.
Since you wear out your decision muscles at work, don't try and rely on them at home. Instead, on a day when you aren't working, plan out your work week evenings. Pick your meals, TV shows, activities...keeping in mind that you will be tired after a day at work. Don't let your relaxed state trick you into planning a Wednesday evening of Beef Bourguignon, hot yoga and a review of the last 4 seasons of Mad Men. With your week planned, you won’t need to rely on your brain--just follow the plan.
The benefit to this plan is that you can avoid common traps of thoughtless decision making like eating a jar of peanut butter for dinner or watching American Idol.
I’m sorry, I had to say it.
The beach or the mountains?
The beach. No comparison. Vacations are for shops, restaurants and skee-ball. Let yourself go to the mountains and before you know it, you’re camping. Shudder.