The benefits of our faulty memory - Deepstash

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Memory bias: how selective recall can impact your memories - Ness Labs

The benefits of our faulty memory

The limits of our memory serve us well in many respects.

  • Limited memories are useful trade-off to allow us to function and survive. We have thousands of memories, for example, of tables. If we recall all the events related to a table, it will create mass confusion with data overload.
  • Flawed memories may also help us to cope with our past and navigate our future. It may give us more confidence in our past decisions or make us remember happier events.

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Tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon
Tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon

The tip-of-the-tongue, or lethologica, is a common phenomenon where memories seem to be momentarily inaccessible.

Bilingual people seem to experience more tip-of-the-tongue...

How to manage the tip-of-the-tongue state

Next time you experience a tip-of-the-tongue state, don't retrieve the information from memory. Instead, look up the correct answer. Repeat it a few times or write it down to help with encoding.

People that experience the tip-of-the-tongue state often suffer from incorrect practice time. Instead of learning the correct work, they are learning the mistake itself. For example, some music students who claim to practice diligently can get worse over time. This is because they keep on repeating the same mistakes, instead of using deliberate practice. They actually train themselves to make mistakes.

Our values
Our values

Our values are our preferences about what we consider appropriate courses of actions.

They strongly influence our decisions. Therefore we should take the time to consider w...

The transmission of values

Personal values can be ethical, moral, ideological, social, or even aesthetic. Values are mostly transmitted through parenting, but our cultural environment also plays a role.

For instance, American parents tend to value intellectual knowledge; Swedish parents value security and happiness; and Dutch parents value independence and the ability to stick to a schedule.

The four personal value orientations

There are four different personal value orientations based on our "terminal values " - our desirable states of existence, and "instrumental values" - the means by which we achieve our end goals.

  1. Personal-competence. "I value wisdom (terminal), which I believe can be achieved through independent thinking (instrumental)."
  2. Personal-moral: "I valued true friendship (terminal), which I believe can be achieved through honesty (instrumental)."
  3. Social-competence: "I valued equality (terminal), which I think can be achieved through ambitious work (instrumental)."
  4. Social-moral: "I value national security (terminal), which I believe can be achieved through obedience (instrumental)."
The Hindsight Bias
The Hindsight Bias

A bias that many people including historians, experts and physicians encounter is the hindsight bias, which makes them think they knew how an event would turn out before it happene...

The Factors Behind The Hindsight Bias
  1. Selective Activation And Reconstructive Anchoring (SARA): Only remembering the information partially and using the same as a memory anchor to reactivate the (altered) memory when new information arrives.
  2. Reconstruction After Feedback (RAFT): Taking ‘the best’ approach involves using one’s influence and exposure about a particular knowledge and taking the best answer based on our reconstruction of information, and creating a biased version of the same.
  3. Causal Model Theory (CMT): Using a ‘cause reasoning’ for explaining the reality of an event that is different from one’s expectations, mainly by retrieving selective memories.
Hindsight Bias: Consequences

If the bias distortion is within limits, hindsight bias makes a normal person confident and self-assured and facilitates decision making.

Rational thinking is impaired with hindsight bias, as one is not inclined towards learning from experience, or having a growth mindset which involves views different from our own.