Do you ever look back on your decisions and think, “Why I on earth did I do that?”
We all make bad decisions.
- Buying an SUV that sucks up all your cash
- Starting a relationship without being in love
- Saying yes to a job that you’re not passionate about
- Creating products that no one needs
Shit happens (the above examples are all about me). But the funny thing is that bad decisions never seem like bad decisions in the moment.
I’ve been reading about the decision-making process of Warren Buffet and Charlie Munger, two of the most successful investors of all time.
In Alice Schroeder’s biography of Warren Buffett, I read that Buffet and Munger have a learning strategy that’s based on what you should avoid doing. They identify mistakes and do their best to avoid those mistakes.
What do you do when you feel tired or overwhelmed? Do you power through? Or do you take some time off?
In the past, I thought that you should always power through — no matter what. Now, I still think that way when it comes to life in general. You can’t quit taking care of yourself and your family.
A sense of responsibility is one of the most powerful motivators in life. But I’m not talking about a lack of motivation here.
I’m talking about taking time off work. But there’s still a massive taboo on taking time off. Some people think it’s for losers. Others think it’s about escaping your work.
After all, “If you love your work and life, why do you even need a break?”
Have you ever made a decision that seemed illogical looking back? We’re all highly illogical beings even though we think the opposite!
Every person creates their own social reality. The way you view the world is completely subjective because we all have cognitive biases.
The concept of cognitive biases was introduced in 1972 by two psychologists, Amos Tversky and Daniel Kahneman. A cognitive bias is a systematic thinking error that impacts judgments, and therefore, our decisions.
As of this writing, there are 106 decision-making related cognitive biases known! We all make these errors. So there’s no point in trying to become a perfect thinker. It’s impossible.
However, with practice, you can avoid some thinking mistakes that many of us make. And by avoiding these errors, we can improve our decisions, and consequently: Our lives and careers.
What follows is a list of three thinking errors. The question is: Do you make these errors? If so, I’ll also share a fix.