deepstash

Beta

8 Mistakes Our Brains Make Every Day And How To Prevent Them

Memories vs. facts

We believe our memories more than facts. Our memories are highly fallible and plastic. And yet, we tend to subconsciously favor them over objective facts. 

Don't base a factual decision on your gut instinct without at least exploring the data objectively first.

1221 SAVES


This is a professional note extracted from an online article.

Read more efficiently

Save what inspires you

Remember anything

IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

8 Mistakes Our Brains Make Every Day And How To Prevent Them

8 Mistakes Our Brains Make Every Day And How To Prevent Them

https://www.businessinsider.com/8-common-thinking-mistakes-our-brains-make-every-day-and-how-to-prevent-them-2013-10

businessinsider.com

8

Key Ideas

Information that matches our beliefs

We surround ourselves with it: We tend to like people who think like us; if we agree with someone's beliefs, we're more likely to be friends with them.

This makes sense, but it means that we subconsciously begin to ignore or dismiss anything that threatens our world views

The "swimmer's body illusion"

It's a thinking mistake and it occurs when we confuse selection factors with results. 

Professional swimmers don't have perfect bodies because they train extensively. Rather, they are good swimmers because of their physiques.

The sunk cost fallacy

It plays on this tendency of ours to emphasize loss over gain.

The term sunk cost refers to any cost that has been paid already and cannot be recovered. The reason we can't ignore the cost, even though it's already been paid, is that we're wired to feel loss far more strongly than gain.

The gambler's fallacy

It is a glitch in our thinking that occurs when we place too much weight on past events, believing that they will have an effect on future outcomes.

The positive expectation bias

This is when we mistakenly think that eventually, our luck has to change for the better.

Somehow, we find it impossible to accept bad results and give up—we often insist on keeping at it until we get positive results, regardless of what the odds of that happening actually are.

The Buyer's Stockholm Syndrome

It happens when we rationalize our purchases, even if we're not satisfied with what we've got.

We're pretty good at convincing ourselves that those flashy, useless, badly thought-out purchases are necessary after all. 

The anchoring effect

It essentially works like this: rather than making a decision based on pure value for investment (time, money, etc.), we factor in comparative value—that is, how much value an option offers when compared to another option.

Memories vs. facts

We believe our memories more than facts. Our memories are highly fallible and plastic. And yet, we tend to subconsciously favor them over objective facts. 

Don't base a factual decision on your gut instinct without at least exploring the data objectively first.

EXPLORE MORE AROUND THESE TOPICS:

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Decision-making errors

Most decision-making errors boil down to:

  • logical fallacies (over-generalizations, comparing apples and oranges, circular thinking)
  • limiting beliefs (underes...
Confirmation Bias

If you already have an opinion about something before you've even tried to figure it out, chances are you'll over-value information that confirms that opinion.

Think about what kinds of information you would expect to find to support alternative outcomes.

Attribution Bias

The “fundamental attribution error,” is when we excuse our own mistakes but blame other people for theirs.

Give other people the chance to explain themselves before judging their behavior.

2 more ideas

Status quo bias
Status quo bias

Status quo bias is when we prefer that our environment and situation should remain unchanged.

The bias has the most impact in the area of decision-making, as we tend to pre...

Common Explanations for Status Quo Bias

These explanations are all irrational for preferring the status quo:

  • Loss Aversion: When we make decisions, we weigh the potential for loss more heavily than the potential for gain.
  • Sunk Costs: We continue to invest resources like time, money, or effort into a specific endeavor just because we are already invested, not because it is the best choice.
  • Cognitive Dissonance: In decision-making, we an option as more valuable once we have chosen it. Considering an alternative can cause cognitive dissonance.
  • Mere Exposure Effect: It states that people prefer something they've been exposed to before.
  • Rationality vs. Irrationality: We may choose to keep our current situation because of the potential transition cost of switching to an alternative. It becomes irrational when we ignore choices that can improve a situation because we want to maintain the status quo.
Status Quo Bias examples
  • When offered several sandwich options, individuals often choose a sandwich they have eaten before.
  • In 1985, Coca Cola reformulated the original Coke flavor and started selling a "New Coke." Although blind taste tests found many consumers preferred New Coke, consumers continued to buy Coke Classic. New Coke was discontinued in 1992.
  • In political elections, the current candidate is more likely to win than the challenger.
All fears are not created equal

Some are useful, and some are useless fears that you can't or shouldn't do anything about. 

They sap your strength for no reason, and you shou...

Fear can harm you

In scuba diving, for instance, fear can cause you to breathe too fast, swim too hard, move too suddenly, fail to take note of your surroundings, or rise too quickly toward the surface.

Knowing that fear has the potential to harm you can help you set it aside. Fold up that fear, put it in a box, and promise you'll get back to it later at a less dangerous time.

Fear and chemicals

You may think it's your judgment deciding that something is dangerous and you should be afraid, but what actually happens is that fear chemicals are flooding into your brain.

Experiments have shown that fear can be induced artificially by injecting certain chemicals. Do the chemicals know what you should and shouldn't be afraid of? They don't. You do.

5 more ideas