Reading Notes : You’re Not So Smart

This book felt like an end­less streak of slaps in the face,  pre­sent­ing every bias one might have. I think I might have checked all of them, even the one I didn’t think I had. It does a real­ly good job in explain­ing our com­mon bias by pro­vid­ing sol­id links to sci­en­tif­ic stud­ies and real life exam­ples that we can all relate too. It’s a great read if you want to learn more about your behav­ior or why you act the way you act.

Lesson: We’re all incred­i­bly biased, and not so unique. In fact we tend to all fall in the same pit­falls over and over again. Learn about your bias, build on them, improve and repeat.

My note: 4/5

GoodReads note : 3.85/5

Amazon link : here we go

Reading notes

You are a sto­ry you tell yourself.”

You want to be right about how you see the world, so you seek out infor­ma­tion that con­firms your beliefs and avoid con­tra­dic­to­ry evi­dence and opinions.”

You tend to believe anec­dotes and indi­vid­ual sen­sa­tion­al news sto­ries are more rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the big pic­ture than they are.”

You run out of time to get things done because you think in the future, that mys­te­ri­ous fan­tas­ti­cal realm of pos­si­bil­i­ties, you’ll have more free time than you do now.”

You don’t think in sta­tis­tics, you think in exam­ples, in stories.”

As the philoso­pher Bertrand Russell once said, “In the mod­ern world the stu­pid are cock­sure while the intel­li­gent are full of doubt.”

You want the world to be fair, so you pre­tend it is.”

We are all far more sim­i­lar than we think.”

The coun­ter­cul­ture, the indie fans, and the under­ground stars — they are the dri­ving force behind cap­i­tal­ism. They are the engine.”

Having a dis­sent­ing opin­ion on movies, music, or clothes, or own­ing clever or obscure pos­ses­sions, is the way mid­dle-class peo­ple fight one anoth­er for sta­tus. They can’t out-con­sume one anoth­er because they can’t afford it, but they can out-taste one another.”

You don’t believe you are an aver­age per­son, but you do believe every­one else is.”

Memory is imper­fect, but also con­stant­ly chang­ing. Not only do you fil­ter your past through your present, but your mem­o­ry is eas­i­ly infect­ed by social con­ta­gion. You incor­po­rate the mem­o­ries of oth­ers into your own head all the time.”

Never be afraid to ques­tion author­i­ty when your actions could harm your­self or oth­ers. Even in sim­ple sit­u­a­tions, like the next time you see a line of peo­ple wait­ing to get into a class­room or a movie or a restau­rant, feel free to break norms — go check the door and look inside.”

Reality, as you expe­ri­ence it, is a vir­tu­al expe­ri­ence gen­er­at­ed by the brain based on the inputs com­ing in from your sens­es. You don’t get a raw feed from those inputs; instead, you get an edit­ed version.”

Your brain is always look­ing for pat­terns and send­ing lit­tle squirts of hap­py through­out your body when it finds them, but like faces in clouds, you often see pat­terns where none exist.”

People are not good at heart, Zimbardo says, but because their envi­ron­ment encour­ages it. Anyone, he believes, is capa­ble of becom­ing a mon­ster if giv­en the pow­er and opportunity.”

0 Kudos

Simon Vandereecken

Freelance UX Designer living in Brussels (Belgium), with a deep interest into philosophy, personal growth, self improvement, books, music, ... well in many things ! I use this website to write thoughts going through my head as well as ideas, observations and reading notes. Feel free to get in touch ;)