Overcoming Cognitive Biases: Chapter One

CreateSpace, "Overcoming Cognitive Biases: Thinking More Clearly and Avoiding Manipulation by Others", Edited by E. Scott Fruehwald, 2017

18 Pages Posted: 5 Jun 2017  

Edwin S. Fruehwald

Independent

Date Written: May 29, 2017

Abstract

Brain biases clog up our thinking and allow us to be manipulated by others. They affect how judges think, how politicians speak, and how advertisers manipulate consumers. They affect our everyday lives, and they even affect how we relate to others.

The human thinking process is imperfect. The brain evolved. Parts of our brains today are remnants of the brains our early ancestors had, brains which had developed to survive under very different conditions from today. These remnants produce cognitive biases – ways of thinking that are different from reality. Individuals need to overcome their cognitive biases in order to think more clearly and avoid being manipulated by others.

I have written this book for anyone who wants to understand cognitive biases and begin to overcome them. First, I give you the big picture. I discuss the basics of cognitive biases and the dangers of biased thinking. Then, I ask you to look at your inner self through a series of questions and exercises. Next, I deal with specific cognitive biases, such as optimism biases, negativity biases, biases concerning others, and behavioral economic biases, and I help you deal with these biases through a series of exercises. Then, I ask you to apply what you have learned in more complicated exercises. Finally, the Epilogue shows you how Uber is using brain biases to control their drivers and how smartphone and social media are employing these biases to get you to stay on-line longer.

Keywords: cognitive biases, legal education, thinking and the brain

Suggested Citation

Fruehwald, Edwin S., Overcoming Cognitive Biases: Chapter One (May 29, 2017). CreateSpace, "Overcoming Cognitive Biases: Thinking More Clearly and Avoiding Manipulation by Others", Edited by E. Scott Fruehwald, 2017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2976509

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