The Ultimate Guide to Psychological Awareness and Well-Being

The Ultimate Guide to Psychological Awareness and Well-Being
Rate this post

Content:

  1. Mental Illness
  2. Mental Health
  3. Limiting Beliefs
  4. Inner Critic
  5. Mental Fixedness
  6. Summary

Around 275 million people worldwide suffer from anxiety disorder, 62% of whom are females.

More than 300 million people are depressed, while 10.5 million others suffer from eating disorders.

Reading into these numbers, it is not a secret anymore that mental illness is becoming a more and more global concern.

Unlike physical illness, Mental illness cannot be narrowed down to a single root cause that could be easily quarantined or fought.

It is not this virus or that microbe that causes the illness; it is a group of factors accumulating together that pull the trigger.

Yet, in order to stay alert and be proactive towards our mental health, we need to correctly understand what mental illness is, and its preventive means.

Mental Illness

Mental illness is defined as a health problem that causes a change in our behavior, feelings, and cognition,

In other words, mental illness is anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, emotional disorder or an eating disorder.

It could result from genetic factors, brain chemicals imbalance, long subjection to abusive environments or a combination of the three.

Although we can hardly eliminate or alter the genetic and chemical factors contributing to the disease, we can somehow control or change the environmental factors and how we respond to it.

Having said that, it is critical to understand though that mental illness could be equally developed at work, schools, homes, gymnastic classes, or playgrounds, so, we need to stay cautious.

However, a good place to start for preventive actions is always oneself.

Since it is all about how we think, feel and deal, then we need to develop a sound understanding of our psychic to be able to sport any early warnings soon enough.

Nevertheless, we can never know how far we are unless we compare ourselves against some sort of reference.

In this case, our reference is mental health.

Mental Health

 mental well being

As per the World Health Organization, mental health is the state of well-being in which a person realizes his or her own potential.

Or simply it is our capacity to deal with different situations and people with a satisfying level of emotional maturity and behavioral adjustment.

This capacity is reflected in how we make decisions, draw conclusions, deal with challenging and stressful situations, build and maintain relationships, and most important of all how we talk with ourselves.

A psychologically healthy person is one who can keep going in life despite the challenges with a sound mind.

Having said that, how we deal and respond to the situations in our lives is directly proportional to our psychological health and well-being.

Yet, in many cases, we are not well equipped with the talent and expertise to do so.

Our psychological awareness is a big opportunity that we all need to give due consideration to.

What is going on outside us is a reflection of what is really going on inside.

And believe me, there is a whole world inside that needs your knowledge and attention.

Knowing about oneself in the 21st chaotic century is not a luxury anymore; it is a necessity and a pre-requisite for psychological health and emotional well-being.

We need to understand how we think, and where we get stuck in our thinking, how we talk to ourselves and assess whether this talking is empowering or imprisoning, and what motivates us to act.

We need to learn how to get the best out of our minds and intertwined emotions, and how to use them for our own good and sanity.

This guide will walk you through the most critical aspects of mental awareness that directly impacts the quality of your everyday life.

1- Limiting Beliefs

limiting beliefs

There was an old story about a strong elephant that got captured one day by a hunter.

Desperate for its freedom, the elephant tried to break its chains over and over, until the hunter brought much bigger metal chains and tied it to the elephant’s legs.

The elephant tried again and again, but this time nothing in vain.

Helplessly the elephant gave up its dream of freedom and stopped trying to break its chains.

Seeing the elephant giving up to captivity, the hunter replaced the expensive metallic chains with wooden ones and gave the elephant the chance of a lifetime to run.

Surprisingly the elephant did not run and did not even try to break its chains, because it believed it could not!

That, in a nutshell, is what limiting beliefs are.

Just like the elephant’s belief that it cannot break free, our limiting beliefs are illusionary chains that hold us back in our lives.

Limiting beliefs are false beliefs that we hold about ourselves and the world around us that affects the quality of our lives negatively.

Beliefs like:

  • I am not good enough
  • I am not a lucky person
  • I am not worthy of love
  • Money only comes the hard way
  • Life is unfair
  • Good people are hard to find
  • A lot of money is dangerous
  • Parenting is only about sacrifices
  • Nobody loves me
  • People usually have bad intentions
  • I am a bad mother
  • I have a terrible memory
  • I am not born to be a leader

Limiting beliefs essentially were missing pieces of information that we filled in for ourselves or from the voices around us.

Whether we got the answers from within, from our parents or friends, it all started with a missing piece of information that through repetition developed into a limiting belief and a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Our minds are outstanding in picking patterns and making associations.

We are continually categorizing the information we receive from outside and forming it into patterns, which later on form our belief system.

Let us say for example that you were applying to the job of your dreams, and have worked so hard to be qualified for it, yet, every interview you took, you get rejected.

After many rejections, you started believing that you were not good enough for this job, or maybe you will never be good enough for any other job as well.

What happened is that the first time you got rejected you probably felt disappointed and your brain needed an explanation for that heartfelt disappointment.

That explanation was

“maybe I was not good enough.”

However, when the situation got repeated, both the emotion and the explanation got fired again and the

“maybe, I was not good enough”

turned into

“definitely, I am not good enough” a

became a hard-wired limiting belief.

Once a piece of information is repeated to our brains, our brains start finding evidence that validates this information and strengthens it.

The problem is that much of this scenario happens on the unconscious level and hence becomes very hard to detect, interrupt its making or even challenge it.

Not only that, but limiting beliefs turn into filters through which we process the outer world.

We receive information from the outer world through our different senses.

This sensory information gets stamped with the judgment of our limiting beliefs, making its interpretation a strong armor for these beliefs.

Unfortunately, It is not only our brains that are involved; all our body responds to these beliefs.

It is said that “Psychosocial dwarfism” which is a growth failure that happens in children between 2 to 15 years old, is caused by emotional deprivation.

Children who feel and believe they are unloved translate this belief into a depleted level of growth hormones.

So, limiting beliefs are more of cancerous low-quality interpretation that holds us hostage to its prejudice.

It is the tape that our unconscious mind plays over and over again even when it is no longer up to date.

They start as missing information that eventually turns into our judgment and decision-making systems.

That is way; it is crucial to become aware of these limiting beliefs and replace them with empowering ones.

How to spot your limiting beliefs?

spot-limiting-beliefs

Our limiting beliefs are usually repeated a lot in our words.

An effective way to start is through writing down about the things that are stressing you out lately.

You can spot some repeated words or maybe a pattern that could help you catch a limiting belief.

For example, “I am afraid they won’t like me” “I am afraid I can’t do it” “Every time…..”
“It is always like that” “I really hate it when…”

If you go with the repetition of your words, you will easily identify your limiting beliefs.

Self-aware friends are usually of good help

Another effective way is by having a friend who understands you well and is aware of him or herself ask you questions about what is bothering you.

They have to ask the questions fast to get a spontaneous non-filtered answer.

The deeper they get, the more the limiting beliefs will surface.

Many limiting beliefs could be spotted through this exercise.

Self-reflection

A different way is through self-reflection, by asking yourself why you feel what you feel and going as deep as you can.

You can even start from the past by questions like:

What did my parents teach me about work, studying, and relationships?

Many limiting beliefs come from parents’ views about the world which they directly or indirectly shared with their kids.

What did my teachers always say about me? And how did that make me feel?

Why do I fear public speaking that much, what happened the first time I presented in front of my class?

Why do I get bored quickly or always pick the shortcomings of people? Do I fear commitment?

What are my most important values? And do I always stick to them?

Why do I become very defensive when criticized? Do I silently agree to the feedback or does it hit the “I am not good enough” chord of mine?

How did my friends change my views about life? What kind of behavior have I acquired from them and how is that affecting my life now?

What are my childhood most favorite movies? And in which way have they affected my personality?

The funny thing is that many times you catch yourself modeling a movie character in certain aspects of your life without even realizing it.

Like copying Miranda’s management style from “the devil wears Prada”, or copying Viola’s romantic side from “she’s the man”, or just about other characters that you identified with.

It is also very crucial to ask yourself about the events that shaped your life the most? And in which way did they shape your life?

These questions and many others would help have a deeper view of yourself and further understand your values and beliefs.

Talking to a coach

coaching

The good thing about coaching is that a coach helps you navigate inside yourself.

He/she only gives you the torch and helps you draw the map; then the rest is all yours.

Unlike therapy or mentoring, coaching is only guidance, no dictation, and no advice.

A good coach is someone who asks the right questions at the right time.

So, it is a good idea to seek the help of a coach if you are not used to self-reflecting or don’t understand yourself well enough yet.

Once you figured out your limiting beliefs, now it is time to change them.

Changing your limiting beliefs

Identifying their origin

As discussed earlier, limiting beliefs were voices that were strengthened by repetition and emotional association.

However, they started somewhere.

Whether it was your parents’ voice telling you that life is unfair, or your teacher’s poor evaluation that you are a bad presenter, or your friends making fun of you because you failed, your limiting belief had a start.

Nevertheless, it is essential to identify its origin because once you do, you will realize how unauthentic your limiting belief is.

How irrational this generalization is and how it turned your life upside down.

It is not that powerful, yet, only you gave it that much authority over your life.

Give it back its actual weight

actual weight

When you realize that your limiting belief is not that realistic, you need to give it back its actual weight.

It was only someone’s point of view, not a definition of who you are or what you are capable of doing.

One good way to minimize its effect is through sarcasm.

Finding reasons to make fun of your limiting belief is a sure-fire way to diminish its effect on you.

Imaging that the voice causing all this misery in your life is just a voice of a clown with a big red nose, funny voice and weird movement, will you give it that much attention, I guess not.

Make new beliefs

If you succeed in belittling the impact of your limiting beliefs, yet, couldn’t provide your brain with an alternative, then rest assured that your mind will revert to them again.

As explained, limiting beliefs compensate for missing information, so we need to fill this gap with new empowering beliefs.

It is not as easy though, because beliefs take a long time to formulate and needs a lot of awareness and affirmation to gain its strength, but it’s doable though.

You can start by writing down your new set of empowering beliefs and hanging them around, so they become visible.

You can also ask your support system to repeat them a lot to you as necessary until your mind takes them in.

And every time you make behavior that affirms this new belief also write it down to give your mind a materialistic proof so that it strengthens the new belief.

2- Inner Critic

self critic

How often do you hear people talking inside your head?

Are you familiar with your inner dialog, the one that is continuously going on in your head nagging you, blaming you, or criticizing you?

That voice is your inner critic.

Our inner critic is the negative voices speaking in our heads all the time, imprisoning our potential inside its destructive criticism.

These voices are not an early sign of madness or mental illness, it is an intrinsic part of our psychological being.

This voice is developed from a very early age, as early as 12 months old perhaps.

It is more of the invisible character developed in our heads.

When we were first born, we felt the love of our parents unconditionally.

No matter how we usually chose the wrong time to get sick, wet ourselves, or throw food around, our parents still found us adorable.

Until one day when we started to understand and process language, and we hit again on a bad day.

Maybe it was us spreading our diaper cream all over the room, or coloring our masterpiece on the couch that our mums couldn’t take it, and consequently lost her grip and yelled.

These very first negative words, unfortunately, got repeated again and again with every undesired behavior that mum couldn’t take it.

The “Are you stupid” “I am going to kill you” “Can’t you do anything right?” “No, you can’t do that” and “What have you done?” have become the voices in our heads.

Not only voices, but voices with negative implications and consequences.

In other words, the negative voices outside cultivated the critic inside.

Besides, the defenses we develop while we were young to cope with the outer world’s frustration results in our inner critic.

For example, when we feel neglected and rejected, our inner defenses protect us through an inner voice of

“People are disappointing, I am on my own.”

Another example is when we are loved conditionally or consistently blamed for our shortcoming, we develop an inner voice of “I am not worth it” or “I am not good enough.”

There is also the “I am not smart” “I am not feminine” “I always screw up” “I am not good in making friends” and so forth.

It eats us alive every time we make a mistake or fail at something or are put in a threatening situation.

It kind of recalls all our childhood frustration and reminds us of it all at once.

By definition, our inner critic is our negative self-talk that is counterproductive and has the effect of demotivating oneself.

This inner voice is neurochemically wired to feel unhappy, disappointed, stressed, ashamed, and regretful.

In other words, it can’t help being critical and grumpy.

It is the negative side of who we are.

Yet, how this inner voice speaks to us and the kind of dialog it initiates differ from one person to the other depending on the voices from our childhood and our perception of it.

Types of our inner critic or saboteurs

saboteurs

Another word for our inner critic is the saboteur.

There are ten different types of saboteurs.

Each is a character on its own.

Usually, each one of us has a dominant saboteur and another secondary one.

These ten saboteurs are:

1- The Judge

It is that voice painting the future with fear and worries, the voice that turns your life into hell every time you make a mistake or fail an expectation of yourself.

It is that voice that is always picking up on what’s wrong with everything, your life, your job, your boss, your spouse, your kids, and your colleagues.

2- Hyper-Achiever

This saboteur preys on achievements to feel worthy and validated.

It is highly conscious of image and status.

It cares too much about how it appears to other people and tries to hide its vulnerabilities at all costs.

This voice, also, detests emotions as it gets in the way.

If faced by failure or shortcoming, this voice eats you alive, as you and others are only accepted if successful.

3- Restless

The voice that wants you to stay busy all the time.

This inner voice is seldom satisfied with the status quo as more could be done.

It is always looking for greater excitement and stimulations.

It runs away from unpleasant feelings through distracting itself.

The restless is impatient and always fidgeting when things are not exciting enough.

For this saboteur, life is so short to be wasted.

However, what this voice is trying to hide is the anxiety of being in the present moment, because it could hold unpleasantness with it.

That is why the restless avoids real focus on relationships and stuff that matters.

This inner critic is usually a defense to painful childhood or circumstances.

4- Stickler

This saboteur is the perfectionist, the organizer, the punctual, the opinionated, and the Mr. Right.

While the stickler is working so hard to make up for other people’s flaws and relentless, it is also for critical of oneself as well as others.

It hates criticism and doesn’t take it lightly.

The stickler cannot tolerate mistakes and shortcomings.

It kills itself for perfection and hence is always chasing after a mirage.

That is why it is always left with disappointment and frustration.

The stickler has a tough time being flexible because it is either black or white no grey.

It causes self-doubt, anxiety, and resentment for others.

People usually don’t like a stickler.

This saboteur is always avoiding self-judgment and criticism through perfection.

Usually, sticklers were victims of conditioned love.

5- Pleaser

The voice that is always trying to seek others acceptance for survival.

It does so through flattering others, helping them, or pleasing them.

Consequently, it overlooks its own needs and hence turns you into a whiner.

The pleaser has a hard time communicating its own needs and hence makes people feel guilty about not reciprocating care.

This saboteur believes that its worthiness comes from putting others ahead of oneself.

Yet, it also sees people as ungrateful and unappreciative.

It assigns itself as the super guardian of others.

The voice inside many mothers.

6- Hyper-Vigilant

The worst-case scenario saboteur, the one that imagines all that could go wrong and stress about it.

It is always doubtful, not only to self, but also to others.

It fears to make mistakes and thinks that if you do the whole world would be after you for messing up.

The hyper-vigilant locks you in “the world is a dangerous place” dilemma.

This inner voice was the consequence of an unreliable parent or unaccountable source of security.

7- The Avoider

This inner voice usually avoids conflict at all cost, even if the price is your inner peace.

It makes you agree to things people usually wouldn’t agree to.

It belittles real issues and downplays them.

The avoider makes you procrastinate undesired tasks and makes you lose yourself into a routine.

It tends to ignore things you don’t like on the hope that they take care of themselves and disappear.

This saboteur always speaks to you of the greater good of avoiding conflicts and peace-making.

However, when the judge comes in, it labels the avoider a loser.

8- Victim

The victim is always the good guy in all stories.

It is the one who always faces terrible things and ill-treatment from others.

No one understands the victim or walks in his shoe.

It always feels disadvantaged and is waiting for a rescuer.

The victim looks for pain in every corner and identifies with it.

The victim’s voice is the negative attention seeker who was not seen or appreciated enough when it was young.

This saboteur seeks the affection of others through complaining.

9- Hyper-Rational

This inner critic is the arrogant intellect.

It dwells on the rational processing of everything to the extent that it becomes distant and cold.

This saboteur keeps you distanced away from others and locks you in the comfort of analysis.

It usually puts you in a higher status than most ordinary irrational beings.

It blocks emotions with the label of “distractive”.

The hyper-rational is usually skeptical or cynical.

It stands between you and irrational optimism and realms of new beliefs or ideas.

This saboteur gives you a sense of security through a false pretended intellectual superiority.

10- The Controller

This saboteur tries to control everything and everyone to predicted outcomes to feel safe.

This is usually developed as a result of many let downs and psychological wounds caused by others.

It always challenges others as well as denies and makes fun of emotions and labels them as soft and weak.

It pushes oneself as well as others beyond their limits all the time.

The controller gives you a tough time about unpredicted events.

It goes crazy once it is out of control.

This saboteur always feels like you can’t depend on others and should get everything done yourself.

Underneath this saboteur is usually a hidden fear of being controlled by others because people once caused them a lot of pain

Silencing our inner critic

1- Catch and Label

Once you catch one of these saboteurs messing with your mind, label it.

So instead of saying “the world is a dangerous place,” say “my saboteur thinks the world is a dangerous place.”

This way you bring conscious awareness to your inner critic and awareness is key to healing.

Thus, it would be easier to let it go instead of trusting or blindly following it.

Every time you expose your saboteur and label it, you weaken it.

2- Get in touch with your true self

Our inner critic is continually fighting our true self.

Our true self is the part of you that is reassuring, believing, hopeful, peaceful, innovative and rational.

The part that you sometimes hear soothing you when things are upside down.

Our true self is based on our positive intelligence brain which consists of the middle prefrontal cortex, ACC insular cortex, and parts of the right brain.

It operates through five critical powers:

1- Empathy

Empathizing with yourself and feeling compassionate and hence accepting who you are as a person with the good and bad.

Once you learn to empathize with yourself, you silence the judgment, criticism, and self-blame, and you leave room for coming in peace with your vulnerabilities.

As you do that and embrace your vulnerabilities, you learn to open up.

And when this happens, wonders happen, as you can never be whole unless you accept the falls.

2- Exploration

When you allow your true self to start exploring and digging deep within, you begin discovering why things happened and find ways to fix them.

3- Innovation

Your positive intelligence brain is wired for creativity.

It is always a good idea to unleash your creativity and start thinking of new ways to look at your situation, new positive ways, new possibilities.

Once you do that, the bubble of negativity starts diminishing on its own and hence silence the grumpy inner critic.

4- Navigation

When your true self helps you navigate calmly through all your options, while at the same time reassuring your fears of the unknown, it becomes easier to pick a direction and walk into it with confidence.

This way you keep yourself busy with the action rather than the critical reflection.

5- Activation

When your true self motivates you into fearless action, you start developing more confidence to ignore the saboteurs and trust in yourself.

Your true self has the power to turn every situation into an opportunity.

All you need to do is ask her how can you turn this challenge into an opportunity, so you keep your positive intelligence brain activated and remain positive.

3- Stay in the present moment

A shortcut to happiness is living in the present moment.

Our inner critic usually dwells on the past or is anxious about the future, it is never in the present.

So, when we learn to pay attention to the present moment and fully live in it, we are empowering our true self and silencing the saboteurs.

Learn to enjoy every bite of your apple and every sip of your coffee.

Learn to meditate and do some exercises that bring you in the present moment.

This way you activate your positive intelligence muscles.

Learn to live in the present and appreciate the little moments making it.

3- Mental Fixedness

Mental Fixedness

Let’s assume that your company’s building doors are push doors that you and your colleagues are accustomed to pushing all the time.

However, one day, the company decided to change all its doors into pull doors.

To your surprise, you come next morning and try to push on the same door of yesterday, yet, it doesn’t open.

You keep pushing, but nothing happens.

You push even harder, still nothing!

How long do you think will it take you to try pulling the door instead?

Most probably, it would take forever before the thought crosses our minds.

The same goes for many things in our lives.

Many times, the solution to our problems lays one innovative action away, yet we easily miss that out and get stuck in pushing on pull doors.

As Einstein once said, “No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.”

When our minds cannot perceive a different use for things other than the one it was designed for, psychologists call this functional fixedness.

The challenges in our lives, too, are, in most cases, a result of functional fixedness of our thinking process.

Thinking is a complicated process that does not take place haphazardly.

It is more of a pre-defined brain strategy rather than randomized trials.

Our minds are designed to handle and solve problems, whether these problems are on a test or those that life throws at us using different approaches:

Trial and Error

As per the old saying “If at first, you don’t succeed, try and try again”.

Whenever faced with a problem, your trial and error strategy keeps trying one solution after the other until something works.

There is no clear framework, just keep trying until either your problem is solved or you give up.

Doesn’t sound like very effective, does it?

However, in some cases it is because the problem at hand doesn’t require much brain effort so, trial and error are just enough.

Algorithm

Algorithm is a step by step instructions that our minds follow to solve a problem.

This algorithm produces the same result every time.

Like an instruction manual or a recipe, this problem-solving technique is a standardized thinking process that guarantees a specific outcome.

Heuristic approach

This approach is more of a mental shortcut to reach an outcome.

It is more of deploying your experience to your best interest.

Usually, this approach is used when there is too much information, too little time or when there is too little information too.

Beginning with the end in mind is a useful working backward heuristic.

Another good heuristic technique is chunking your problem down into smaller pieces and handling each one at a time.

Project managers and executive managers usually deploy this approach in handling and solving their day to day challenges.

However, our problem-solving techniques are sometimes hindered by what we call “cognitive biases”.

These cognitive biases are the main contributor to our mental fixedness.

Let us say, for example, you want to rent a new house and you fixed a budget of $1600.

The retailer, however, knows what about your anchoring bias and shows you some very poor houses for $1600.

He then shows you a very nice house for $1800, what is the probability of your reconsidering your budget limitations?

Another example is when something turns out the way you predict and it hits you that “you knew it all along” even though you didn’t.

Cognitive Biases

Our cognitive biases are patterns of thought that lead to poor decision-making.

Many psychologists believe that these biases arise from our brain’s tendency to use heuristics in problem-solving and decision making more often than other techniques.

Looking deeper into the matter, our neural network, the kitchen where everything takes place, is responsible for the associations and combinations of information, prioritization of such information in a way that is compatible with our opinion, beliefs, and expectations.

They are also responsible for retaining information by focusing on dominant information and ignoring irrelevant ones.

The problem, however, lays in our confidence in our judgments and inclinations even when evidence for these judgments are not there.

Our mind does distort, delete and generalize information according to many aspects.

This deformation of information could trick us many times into thinking in certain ineffective patterns.

Types of cognitive biases

Confirmation bias

This bias tends to favor information confirming your own beliefs and discards any other evidence that conflicts with your existing beliefs.

A good example of this bias is stereotyping.

When you believe that men are not detail oriented, your confirmation bias will pick on any piece of information that confirms this stereotype and ignores any other objective judgment that contradicts with your belief.

And hence you will live all your life suffering from men’s lack of details when it was just an individual case that got confirmed.

The problem with this type of bias is the number of misconceptions that we live with.

Misconceptions about life, people and how things go just because our minds trick us in believing what it believes and hardly leaves out an opportunity to question these beliefs.

It usually takes a strong external shock to free us and push us to question our beliefs.

Availability bias

This bias works by placing greater emphasis on the information that comes to your mind first.

Here, you overestimate the importance and appeal of this information.

Like for example, recalling a marketing strategy that you have recently studied in a brainstorming meeting and being confident in the likelihood of its success.

The challenge, of course, is in the reliability of this quickly recalled piece of information, because in many cases it is not the best bet.

Self-serving bias

This bias is all about blaming the outer world for your misfortune and giving yourself credit for good fortune.

Like when you are playing a football match with a team and attributing all missed chances to the team’s bad performance and praising yourself for the good hits.

The problem here is how your mind places you in a “good enough” bubble and blinds you on your pitfalls.

Ironically all these blind zones are the reason for your misfortune and not the world conspiring against you.

Attentional Bias

In this bias, we pay attention to some things and ignore others.

Like for example when you are making a hiring decision you may pay attention to the interviewee’s clothes, accent, and communication skills more than his/her technical expertise.

The problem with that is missing out on the core information sometimes due to selective attention.

Halo-Effect

This is when you use impression versus data when your overall impression about a person influences how you think and act towards him/her.

Because the people in the marketing business is well aware of your halo-bais, they always use attractive figures in their campaign to influence your decision-making.

That was never a coincidence!

Optimism Bias

This bias makes you believe that you are more fortunate than other people, and hence you are hardly prepared to fail.

And when you do, you live in the denial and victim mentality for so long before you learn to accept it and grow out of it.

Hindsight Bias

This bias makes you believe that what you face is predictable for you and that “you knew it all along” kind of confidence.

The problem with that bias is that it deceives you into trusting your judgment more often than you should.

When you get eaten up in the hindsight bias you hardly feel the necessity to learn more or listen more, as you are more entitled to the voice inside!

Ambiguity Effect

This bias pushes you away from choices that have some level of uncertainty, or ambiguity in them.

It more of keeps you in the comfort zone and makes the unknown world very frightening and a place to avoid.

Because of this bias, we avoid our wildest dreams just because they throw us in the wild.

It is as per the famous saying “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.”

Complexity Bias

This bias tricks you in believing that a complex solution will always work better than a simple one, when reality actually does prove the opposite.

This bias is very clear in concept design and software choice, as people tend to choose the most sophisticated option to guarantee the desired outcome.

Misinformation Bias

This bias is the reason for the saying “He lied like an eye witness.”

It was recently discovered that the testimony of eyewitnesses could be highly misleading and far from accurate.

The reason for that is the possibility of our memories to be influenced and even changed by events that happened after the main event.

For example, when an eye witness is asked a leading question, the answer would differ.

Also, using certain words with significant connotation would alter the witness’s memory.

Like using the word “crash” instead of “hit” when asking about the car’s speed, the word “crash” would usually render higher speeds than the word “hit”

Our mind could even go further to recall things that didn’t happen, yet, we are one hundred percent sure it did that we could swear to it.

This misinformation effect doesn’t not only affect eyewitnesses, but it also affects us in our daily lives.

We could swear that we left the car keys on the table when we actually forgot them in the car.

We are certain that we didn’t close the car when we did and so on.

False Consensus Effect

People usually have the tendency to overestimate the percentage with which other people agree to their beliefs and point of views.

The reason for that is a cognitive trick that our mind plays on us to reward our self-esteem.

However, when faced by the truth we are usually disappointed and even feel betrayed.

Although these are not the only cognitive biases that get us stuck, however, these are the most common.

A Final Wrap-Up

Although the world we live in is so messed up, we are sometimes more messed up than the world.

Mental health and psychological well-being are for a great extent a personal choice.

Just like a healthy person invests some effort in eating healthy, preparing meals and exercising.

A mentally stable and healthy person needs to invest some effort into understanding oneself, motivation and biases.

Our thoughts and actions are not as straightforward as we believe, there is too much processing happening behind the scene that we need to be aware of.

Indeed, challenges could get us stuck sometimes, however, it is usually how we approach these challenges that are the real ordeal.

Yes, we are capable beyond measure to heal ourselves only if we do understand it.

Resources:

https://ourworldindata.org/mental-health#eating-disorders

https://www.who.int/en/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression

https://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/content/F602B63256E116BBCA257BF00020AACF/$File/whatmen2.pdf

https://www.who.int/features/factfiles/mental_health/en/

https://www.2knowmyself.com/how_limiting_beliefs_are_created

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2802367/

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/stop-caretaking-the-borderline-or-narcissist/201411/more-questions-about-the-inner-critic

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUyK4byD6HE

https://www.positiveintelligence.com/assessments/

https://simplicable.com/new/cognitive-biases

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6129743/

https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-a-cognitive-bias-2794963

Related Articles
I'd love to hear your thoughts :

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.