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Kingdom Of Crooked Mirrors. What Are Cognitive Biases? - Self-development
Kingdom Of Crooked Mirrors. What Are Cognitive Biases? - Self-development

Video: Kingdom Of Crooked Mirrors. What Are Cognitive Biases? - Self-development

Video: Kingdom Of Crooked Mirrors. What Are Cognitive Biases? - Self-development
Video: 12 Cognitive Biases Explained - How to Think Better and More Logically Removing Bias 2023, June

"I remember exactly, it was." "I knew it would be bad." "I can stop at any moment." By pronouncing such phrases, a person is absolutely confident in his own words. However, it can be cognitive biases. A concept that includes a huge number of stereotyped breakdowns and thinking errors

Cognitive biases can seriously harm our lives. By learning to recognize and get rid of them, we learn to think more rationally and productively.


“The first studies of cognitive biases are linked to the names of Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky. Initially, they believed that cognitive biases relate mainly to decision making and some other thought processes such as reasoning and judgment making.”

Cognitive biases are illogical conclusions, preconceived beliefs that distort perception. These are some errors of thinking that occur according to a certain pattern, systematically. Through cognitive distortions, our minds convince us that things aren't really real

The emergence of cognitive biases is caused, oddly enough, by an evolutionary process. The ability of our ancestors to think quickly was the true choice between life and death. And until now, in an effort to solve faster, we take the shortcut, evaluating the facts. Often this estimate turns out to be wrong.

Classically, cognitive biases are divided into 4 groups

  • 1. Distortions related to behavior and decision making.
  • 2. Distortions associated with probabilities and stereotypes.
  • 3. Socially conditioned distortions.
  • 4. Distortions associated with memory errors.

Alas, this is a rather conditional division that does not allow understanding the chain of cause-effect. In more detail, the causes of distortions are explained by the groups of problems:

  • 1. An overabundance of information
  • 2. Non-obviousness of meaning, ambiguity.
  • 3. The need to act very quickly.
  • 4. Filter to simple. It is more convenient for the brain to remember what is simple and transparent, rather than complex and too ambiguous.


As a rule, the problem of an overabundance of information entails other problems associated with cognitive biases. It's easier for us to remember what is often, in plain sight and with repetitions. The most striking example in this group is central television. As, in fact, the rest of the media. From all the information at the right time, our brain will choose exactly what it has already seen and heard many times.

A popular cognitive error "truth illusion" is the belief that information is true if it has been heard multiple times.

In the case of ambiguity, the brain can more easily remember the information that is surprising and rare. We tend to endow something strange with more importance than it really is

As for the third problem leading to cognitive traps, we can say that speed is a way of modern life. There is more and more information around us and less and less time. In such a situation, the brain needs to very quickly process what is coming from the outside in order to be able to make a decision. To decide and act further, you need to be sure that our action at the moment is the only right and important. That by our action we can influence. But in reality, some of that confidence is just overconfidence. For example, the popular egocentric distortion "the overconfidence effect" - you need to exaggerate something in the past to have weight now. "I've always been very diligent!"

Filtering information is closely related to the memory mechanism. We filter and process new things after the fact. It so happens that memories acquire a brighter color, and some subfacts of what happened are reversed. And now we already own something that actually was not in this form. Attribution error - confidence in the fact of the past, which is in fact a scene from a film (play). Cryptomnesia is the appropriation of ideas without malicious intent, where a memory is taken as a product of one's own imagination.

Correction of cognitive distortions

The very first step towards getting rid of cognitive errors is identifying them. Once you understand the distortion, it is easier to correct its effects. But it so happens that even after the absolute awareness of the cognitive error, we continue to perform irrational actions and draw wrong conclusions. In this case, one awareness of the fact of cognitive distortions is not enough; it is better to work out in stages the entire structure of their appearance.

  • Don't rely entirely on your memory, use hard facts.
  • Resist the excess of secondary information you do not need - in this case, it is better to “cool off” to the media. You can also find out world news in light mode.
  • Understand and accept your emotions. It so happens that it is excessive emotion that interferes with a truthful analysis of what is happening.

You can also use cognitive-behavioral therapy tools, for example, in a group. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is about working with your own automatic thoughts to correct your emotions and actions. This is cognitive restructuring.

And most importantly, the study of cognitive distortions and the associated traps of consciousness will allow you to successfully bypass the pitfalls of your mind and prevent those who are trying to manipulate you with this.

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