10. Excessive generalization
If you think that one thing that turned out to be true once will be true again on another occasion, you’ve fallen into a trap. If a random cashier cheated you, it doesn’t mean that each cashier is going to shortchange you.
9. The majority can’t be wrong.
People are inclined to believe something if they know that someone else already believes it. That’s how generally accepted rules that are treated as normal inside a group appear. A person’s tendency to accept a group’s opinion is the reason why we should treat statistical data critically.
8. We remember only our best traits and actions.
People will be people. Almost every person remembers only their best features. Sometimes we even have a tendency to exaggerate, but we don’t notice it. Daniel Kahneman, a Nobel Prize winner, said, “It’s surprising how rarely people change their opinion. What is more, when they do that, they don’t even understand that. Changing their opinion, many people correct their previous mindset by trying to persuade themselves that they’ve always thought that way.”
7. Our brain thinks that we are different people in the future.
Different studies show that when we start thinking about ourselves in the future, the parts of our brain that work when we think about different people become active. In other words, if we’re asked to think about ourselves in the future, we imagine a stranger who has almost nothing in common with our present self.
6. The Peltzman Effect
The idea of this effect is that an abundance of different protective devices and safety instructions leads to the feeling that a person is invincible — and the risk of an accident increases. For example, if we take away a motorcyclist’s helmet or another piece of equipment, they’ll ride much more safely than if they were fully equipped.