How Not to Be Stupid - Farnam Street - Deepstash

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Stupidity is not the opposite of intelligence.


How Not to Be Stupid - Farnam Street

How Not to Be Stupid - Farnam Street


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People think stupidity is the opposite of intelligence. In fact, stupidity is the cost of intelligence operating in a complex environment.

Stupidity can be defined as overlooking or dismissing conspicuously crucial information.

It’s crucial information: You...

Seven Factors that Lead to Stupidity

  • Being outside your normal environment or changing your routines.
  • Being in the presence of a group(social pressure).
  • Being in the presence of an expert or if you, yourself, are an expert.
  • Doing any task that requires intense focus, or fixating on a particular outcome.

Modern Life And Stupidity

Most of the factors are ubiquitous in modern-day life such as stress, rushing, and information overload. Therefore, our modern life is already susceptible to missing key information and making stupid mistakes.

All factors are present in US hospitals. Medical errors are the third-lea...

The Solution

  • Recognize and know that you are in ”the stupid zone”
  • Pause. Just sit. Stop, before leaving your environment. If you can’t sit still for a minute, you don’t have the time not to!
  • Have a buddy whose job is to watch us. That is their only task, and can’t have the same responsibi...

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