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Psychological Skepticism | Nick Wignall

Psychological skepticism

Psychological skepticism

Psychological skepticism means being neutral toward the contents of your mind.

Most of us are overly trusting of our own minds. But information is not always the truth. Just like the media inundates us with questionable information, our brains do the same thing.

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Psychological Skepticism | Nick Wignall

Psychological Skepticism | Nick Wignall

https://nickwignall.com/psychological-skepticism/

nickwignall.com

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Key Ideas

Psychological skepticism

Psychological skepticism means being neutral toward the contents of your mind.

Most of us are overly trusting of our own minds. But information is not always the truth. Just like the media inundates us with questionable information, our brains do the same thing.

Your mind is just guessing

Emotions, thoughts, and memories may give us useful information, but they are also likely to be unhelpful, inaccurate, or misleading.

For example, when you hear a rattling noise while out hiking, your fear may make you proceed more cautiously. However, fear of your coworkers who think you're dumb keeps you from participating in important meetings.

The information your mind sends you in the form of emotions, thoughts, memories, desires, etc., relates to simply guesses, which means it's unwise to put blind faith in it.

Embracing psychological skepticism

Remind yourself that just because you have a thought doesn't make it true. Just because you feel an emotion doesn't make it significant.

When we deal with our thoughts, emotions, and painful memories, we should consider embracing psychological skepticism - the middle road between ignoring the content of your mind or taking it as gospel.

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    The humor effect defined
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    Benefits of incorporating humor into learning
    • Humorous information receives increased attention during the perception stage.
    • Improved encoding. Our brain gives preferential treatment to humorous information when it comes to storing it in our memory.
    • The use of humor serves as a distraction from negative emotions, such as anger or anxiety, that people might experience when processing certain information.
    • Reading or viewing something humorous has a positive and energizing effect.
    • Adding humor to the information that you are presenting can make it more interesting to others.
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    • improved learning outcomes, 
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    • better student evaluations, 
    • an increased motivation to learn, 
    • improved information recall, 
    • an increased degree of student satisfaction throughout the learning process.

    The use of negative or aggressive humor, especially if aimed at particular students, will produce the opposite effect.

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