The human brain is a remarkable organ. But sometimes, it can lead us astray. Psychological biases shape the decisions we make and how we perceive the world. In this session, you’ll learn about the most common cognitive biases and how these biases alter your judgment. You’ll learn how to recognize bias in your own decision-making process and what to do next time you find yourself making poor choices as a result of this bias.
You’re sitting on your couch, thinking about what you’re going to eat for dinner. You have a few options: spaghetti, curry, or maybe both? You like both options equally well, so it seems like a win-win situation. But then suddenly you remember that your friend told you that the curry she had was the best she’d ever tasted! Suddenly, even though both choices seem equal in terms of benefit to yourself—the decision is really subjective here—you conclude that one option must be better than the other because of what your friend said about it. What happened here?
So how do you avoid being affected by these biases? The best way is to be aware of them and understand how they can affect your decision-making. If you know that you’re more likely to take an action when it’s in line with what other people are doing, then make sure that your decisions are based on facts, not just what “everyone else is doing.” Also keep in mind that it’s not always a bad thing if something doesn’t work out as planned—sometimes failure leads us down a better path than we would have otherwise taken. In short, the key here is to challenge your own thinking and try not to let biases get in the way of good decision making processes.
When making any big decision, it’s important to be aware of how your brain may be influencing your decisions. You don’t need to let these biases take control of your life or decisions, but being mindful of them can help you make better choices in the long run.