You make decisions quicker and based on less information than you think
Individuals fail to anticipate how little information they and others use when making decisions.
An the immediacy of human judgment generally surprises people: we are startled by how quickly we make judgments and how little information we use doing so.
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The fact that we live in an age of information should allow us to make super-informed, data-driven decisions all the time.
But the widespread availability of information does not mean that we actually use it even if we have it: decades of research in psychology and behavioral science found that people readily make data-poor snap judgments in a variety of instances (when forming impressions, when shopping, when evaluating, even when voting).
We fail to anticipate how little information we (and others) use when making decisions.
The immediacy of human judgment generally surprises people: we are startled by how quickly we make judgments and how little information we use doing so.
New information doesn't stack on top of old information until some mental threshold is reached for making a decision.
In reality, the first few pieces of information are weighted much more heavily than later information.
Quick decisions are not always bad. Sometimes they even are remarkably accurate and can save time.
It would be overwhelming to comb through all the available information on a topic every time a decision must be made.
Misunderstanding how much information we actually use to make our judgments has important implications beyond making good or bad decisions.
An example could be our tendency to rely on stereotypes when judging other people: we may believe we'll consider information from all the angles, but in fact, we are more likely to consider very little information and let stereotypes creep in.
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People who are told that the risk of something bad happening is lower than they expected, tend to adjust their predictions to match the new information. But they ignore the new information when the risk is higher.
Part of this overly optimistic outlook stems from our natural tendency to believe that bad things happen to other people, but not to us.
Sometimes we make poor comparisons or the compared items are not representative or equal.
We often decide based on rapid comparisons without really thinking about our options. In order to avoid bad decisions, relying on logic and thoughtful examination of the options can sometimes be more important than relying on your immediate "gut reaction."
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The 2 systems of the brain that wok during decision making:
At times, these systems are at odds with each other, but research shows it's always best to trust an algorithm than your own gut.
There are a few biases they don't address:
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The reason people jump to conclusions is the fact that they find it easy.
Fact-checking and 100 percent accuracy on everything they see or observe consume way too much time for a normal person.
Taking mental shortcuts is the path most people choose to jump to conclusions.
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