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Illusory Correlation: How to Spot This Common Mental Error

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https://jamesclear.com/illusory-correlation

jamesclear.com

Illusory Correlation: How to Spot This Common Mental Error
Human beings have been blaming strange behavior on the full moon for centuries. In the Middle Ages, for example, people claimed that a full moon could turn humans into werewolves. In the 1700s, it was common to believe that a full moon could cause epilepsy or feverish temperatures.

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Illusory correlation

An illusory correlation happens when we mistakenly over-emphasize one outcome and ignore the others.

Example: you visit a big city, you have 2 or 3 negative experiences and in the e...

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Our selective memory

We tend to overestimate the importance of events we can easily recall and underestimate the importance of events we have trouble recalling. 

The easier it is to remember, the more...

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Examples of illusory correlations

  • We know about Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg dropping out of college to start a billion-dollar business and we over-value that story in our heads. Meanwhile, we never really hear about all o...

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