Negative stereotypes are lodged in our cognitive network

They pop up to do mischief, even when you're not conscious of it.

We can learn to recognize bias in ourselves and reduce the harmful impact of that part of ourselves by applying acceptance and commitment therapy. It focuses on developing psychological flexibility. When we investigate our implicit biases, we become more aware of them and can bring our actions in line with our conscious beliefs.

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Problem Solving

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Prejudice is inside us all

Prejudice stems in part from cultural learning, our parents, our schools, and social messages in the media. Prejudice is also deeply embedded in our thought networks.

The good news is that we can combat it.

All forms of prejudice can be explained by what’s called authoritarian distancing - the belief that we are different from some group. Because they are different, they represent a threat we need to control.

When people adopt authoritarian distancing, they display three characteristics:

  • The inability to take the perspective of other people.
  • The inability to feel the pain of other people when you take their perspective.
  • The inability to be emotionally open to the pain of others when you do feel it.
  • Own your bias. Note your prejudicial thoughts or biased action. Recognize tendencies to judge others or yourself. Bring self-compassion and emotional openness to that awareness.
  • Connect with other people's perspectives. Take the view of those whom your mind judges. The purpose is connection and ownership. Allow the pain of being judged or hurt to enter into you. Acknowledge how causing anyone that kind of pain goes against your values.
  • Commit to change. It could mean learning to listen more, speaking out, stepping back so others can step forward, joining an advocacy group, getting to know people who belong to groups that your mind judges.

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RELATED IDEAS

Cognitive Bias

Cognitive Bias is a predictable pattern of mental errors where we misperceive reality and move away from the most likely way of reaching our goals.

These mental blind spots impact all areas of life. Cognitive biases have to do with judgment, not mood.

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IDEAS

Terrified Of Retirement

Many people get identified with their work to such an extent that retirement feels like a big question mark on what will happen to them once they are ‘released’ from what they did their whole life.

One has to see if working beyond the retirement age is an option, as many do keep working well into their 70s, comforted by the psychological security, social acceptance and financial independence that work provides.

You are not your thoughts

Most of us will do anything not to feel worried or dissatisfied and will try and find ways to soothe ourselves or find ways out of our problems.

However, the key to healing and understanding our potential is to change our relationship to our thoughts and emotions.

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