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The Backfire Effect: The Psychology of Why We Have a Hard Time Changing Our Minds

The Backfire Effect: The Psychology of Why We Have a Hard Time Changing Our Minds
by Maria Popova How the disconnect between information and insight explains our dangerous self-righteousness. “Allow yourself the uncomfortable luxury of changing your mind,” I wrote in reflecting on the 7 most important things I learned in 7 years of Brain Pickings. It’s a conundrum most of us grapple with — on the one hand, the awareness that personal growth means transcending our smaller selves as we reach for a more dimensional, intelligent, and enlightened understanding of the world, and on the other hand, the excruciating growing pains of evolving or completely abandoning our former, more inferior beliefs as we integrate new knowledge and insight into our comprehension of how life works. That discomfort, in fact, can be so intolerable that we often go to great lengths to disguise or deny our changing beliefs by paying less attention to information that contradicts our present convictions and more to that which confirms them. So where does this leave us? Donating = Loving

http://www.brainpickings.org/2014/05/13/backfire-effect-mcraney/

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Sam Harris: The Self is an Illusion Transcript Sam Harris: What one of the problems we have in discussing consciousness scientifically is that consciousness is irreducibly subjective. This is a point that many philosophers have made – Thomas Nagel, John Sorrell, David Chalmers. While I don’t agree with everything they’ve said about consciousness I agree with them on this point that consciousness is what it’s like to be you. If there’s an experiential internal qualitative dimension to any physical system then that is consciousness. And we can’t reduce the experiential side to talk of information processing and neurotransmitters and states of the brain in our case because – and people want to do this. The Science of How Memory Works by Maria Popova What the four “slave” systems of the mind have to do with riding a bicycle. “Whatever becomes of [old memories], in the long intervals of consciousness?”

5 Location-Based Reminder Apps For The Forgetful Smartphones have become so smartypants these days that they are now virtually holding our hand every day, making sure that we successfully navigate the hazardous minefield known as life. From making sure that we don’t miss any important birthdays, anniversaries, or dinner dates, phones these days can also give you reminders when you reach a certain place. These are called “location-based reminders” and they require that you switch on your GPS.

How Traditional Parenting Is Harming Children ... And Benefiting Conservative Ideology Photo Credit: PathDoc/Shutterstock.com May 8, 2014 | Like this article? Join our email list: Stay up to date with the latest headlines via email. Cognitive Biases 101, with Peter Baumann Biases are good for you, says the musician and cognitive behavior researcher: "They really guide us in a broader sense so that we don’t hurt ourselves, you know, bias towards feeling solid ground rather than wobbling ground. The interesting thing is really not to try to do away with these biases but to really recognize them and not to see them as something negative." Peter Baumann: Well biases are one of the most interesting phenomena in evolution and I would go as far as saying there’s nothing that’s not a bias. I mean we are biased to live in a certain temperature range and we prefer sweet food to over bitter food.

How Many of These 51 Spiritual Awakening Symptoms do YOU Have? 1. Changing sleep patterns: restlessness, hot feet, waking up two or three times a night. Feeling tired after you wake up and sleepy off and on during the day. There is something called the Triad Sleep Pattern that occurs for many: you sleep for about 2-3 hours, wake up, go back to sleep for another couple of hours, wake again, and go back to sleep again. For others, the sleep requirements have changed. You can get by on less sleep. 24 Free Apps To Help You Change Your Habits I have a lot of things I want to accomplish in the upcoming year. Some of them are really small things (like learning to make hash browns, a breakfast food that has confounded me for years) and some are really big, like learning to live a more minimalist life. In the past, I have begun each new year with great intentions but found following through really difficult—like many of those who create goals for the new year. I think that’s because change is hard. We all want to improve and become better people—healthier, more productive, a better partner or friend. But it can be tough to stick to new behaviors.

Why We Stay In Crappy Situations (And How To Get Out Of Them) Change sucks. That’s why we stay in bad relationships, eat at the same restaurants, and take the same path to work every day. Humans like comfort, even when that comfort is uncomfortable. We’re creatures of habit, and breaking habits causes everything from anxiety, to depression, to eating a pint of Ben & Jerry’s. For example, I spent nine years in a relationship when I should have left after five. Why? How to Optimize Your Brain: Why Refining Emotional Recall is the Secret to Better Memory by Maria Popova “You are what you remember — your very identity depends on all of the events, people and places you can recall.” We’ve seen the many ways in which our memory can be our merciless traitor: it is not a recording device but a practitioner of creative plagiarism, a terrible timekeeper, and the bent backbone in the anatomy of lying. How, then, can this essential human faculty become our ally? In The Art of Doing: How Superachievers Do What They Do and How They Do It So Well (public library) — a compendium of pragmatic advice on such modern fixations and timeless aspirations as how to create a great company culture (courtesy of Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh) to how to be funny (courtesy of Alec Baldwin) to how to fight for justice (courtesy of Constance Rice) — neurologist, neuropsychiatrist, and prolific brain-book author Richard Restak offers some vital tips on how to optimize your brain, central to which is honing the capacity and performance of your memory: Donating = Loving

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