Thinking, Fast and Slow: 7 Takeaways from Daniel Kahnemen

I've finally finished this absolute beast of a book -- and finally I've written another blog post.

I'm falling in love with reading again which I lost sight of a bit in the last month or so.

This book made me ponder long and hard about the human condition -- mainly how and why we make the (often times, stupid) decisions we do.

System 1 vs System 2

We are in an epic battle between our evolutionary monkey mind, system 1, and our distant relative that only shows up semi-annually, system 2, the logical and rational part of us. 

System 1's job is to try and find the lazy way out and distract you from anything and everything. I like to think of our system 1 as that ADHD kid in the classroom that cant keep still.

In contrast, our system 2 is the rational, logical engineering student who is no fun and analyses the world around her like a robot. She is always being tugged by the ADHD kid to explore and do more "fun stuff."

Lazy Mind

We are inherently lazy creatures, us humans.

Lets face it, most of us would get in our cars to drive to the local McDonalds which is 50 meters down the road. Our brains are designed to use the least amount of energy to complete any given task -- thus the reason for consistent breaks and even periods of intense procrastination. We have to train, through repetition, how to focus at any given moment. The more you train yourself to focus, the more skilled you get at switching it on.

We are Primed By our Environment

I've said this before -- it is so crucial to "prime" your mind in everyday by feeding it material that will cause action. One of Jim Rohn's famous quotes is: "weeds grow automatically." This means, if you're not careful what you expose yourself to on a daily basis, negative thoughts will creep in quicker than your weird uncle at a BBQ.

A great way to Prime is to meditate or do Tony Robbins' morning Priming Practice which you can get access to here.

WYSIATI: What You See Is All There Is

When we are given any set of information, we automatically make an assessment of it. The only problem? Usually we ONLY look at that one variable and totally dismiss the other 5000 factors that were involved.

It's easy to make snap judgements of things -- even people. We've all been in this situation. You're at a party, talking to someone who is extremely nice, and we think, "shit, this guy is really cool...his whole life must be in order..." Little do you know, you later find out he has a shit storm of financial struggles and a failing marriage. Just an example, but you get the point.

We struggle with Stats

When it comes to statistics, lets face it, only a select group of individuals can handle that stuff.

We tend to ignore stats all together and go with our intuition. This can cause major problems -- specially in situations if you completely ignore the base rate. The base rate is the standard. If you are a new restaurant, I'm not sure the exact stat, but you have about a 60% chance of closing down within 3 years. If you know thats the base rate, then you should seriously consider it and look carefully at the competition! Don't fool yourself by just believing you're better than the rest.

Over Confidence vs Optimism - Don't Confuse The Two

You know this. We are all way to confident in anything we do. 

That's the reason nearly 90% of the population is making terrible financial decisions. We are way to confident about what we are investing in without looking at all the downsides.

Optimism, on the other hand, is different. Optimism is believing that it will work with the shared ability of looking at it realistically. You are not just going balls to the wall and saying fuck it.

Don't Trust The "Experts"

In the book, Daniel Kahnemen explains how wrong these so called experts are on most occassions. You know the ones? The guys who appear on CNN predicting shit that will likely happen in the future.

Most times, simple maths formulas can make better predictions than these "gurus."

Bottom line, be careful who you put up on a pedastal.

Here is the YouTube video I did on what I got out of Mr Kahnemen's dense book.

Subscribe to my channel for more average episodes on stuff I find fascinating (not really, mainly it just involves food, biohacks and crappy drone footage).