Scott Adams on Loserthink, Part 9

In the book, Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America, Scott Adams analyzed and discussed ways to teach us how to eliminate our biases and to sharpen our ability to think critically.

These are some of my favorite quotes and takeaways from reading the book.

Here are tips on how we can help others break out of their mental prison.

What to watch out for: The Magic Question

“State ONE thing you believe on this topic that you think I do NOT believe.”

“Don’t play Whack-A-Mole with people who have laundry lists of reasons supporting their hallucinations. Ask for their strongest point only, and debunk it if you can. Target their undue confidence, not their entire laundry list.”

What to watch out for: Pacing

“Agree with people as much as you can without lying, and you will be in a better position to persuade.”

What to watch out for: Define the Weeds

“Don’t argue in the weeds of a debate. Dismiss the trivial stuff and concentrate on the variables that matter. That gives you the high ground.”

What to watch out for: Describe the Long Term

“Ask people with opposing opinions to describe what the future would look like if their view of the world were to play out. Does it sound reasonable?”

What to watch out for: Calling Out the Mind Reading

“The best way to avoid the mind reading illusion is to look for it in others. That will prime you to better catch yourself when you do your own mind reading.”

What to watch out for: Framing Issues

“You can’t get the right answer until you frame the question correctly. And partisans rarely do.”

Scott Adams on Loserthink, Part 8

In the book, Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America, Scott Adams analyzed and discussed ways to teach us how to eliminate our biases and to sharpen our ability to think critically.

These are some of my favorite quotes and takeaways from reading the book.

Scott Adams provided some tips on how we can break out of our mental prison.

What to watch out for: Cultural Gravity

“If you allow the opinions of unsuccessful people in your culture to hold you back, you’re engaging in loserthink. If you can learn to think of yourself as free from the cultural gravity of your peers, it will pay off in the long run.”

What to watch out for: Knowing to Where to Start

“If you can’t figure out how to do a task the right way, do it the wrong way and watch how quickly you get free advice.”

What to watch out for: Unfocused Priorities

“Your first priority should be you. If you don’t take care of yourself first, you won’t be much use to anyone else. But hurry up – the world has lots of problems and maybe you can help.”

What to watch out for: Context

“Reports about famous people and other trustworthy topics are either wrong or misleading about 60 percent of the time, often because they lack context. Wait a few days before forming an opinion on anything new, just in case context is missing. It usually is.”

What to watch out for: Listening to the Experts

“We live in a world in which it is dangerous to ignore the advice of experts, but it is almost as dangerous to follow their advice. The trick is to know when the experts are the solution and when they are the jailers of your mental prison.”

What to watch out for: Fake News Filter

“News that is reported the same by news outlets on both the left and the right is probably true. If you only see a story reported by news sites that lean in one direction, it probably isn’t true.”

What to watch out for: Persuasion

“If you think humans are rational about their biggest priorities, you are poorly equipped to navigate life.”

What to watch out for: Managing Embarrassment

“Put yourself in potentially embarrassing situations on a regular basis just to maintain practice. If you get embarrassed as planned, watch how one year later you are still alive. Maybe you even have a funny story because of it.”

“Note how other people’s embarrassments mean little to you when you are an observer. That’s how much your embarrassments mean to them: nothing.”

What to watch out for: Change What You Do to Change How You Think

“To think more effectively, improve your fitness, diet, and sleeping.”

What to watch out for: The Forty-Eight-Hour Rule and the Twenty-Year Rule

“It is loserthink to imagine you can accurately discern the intentions of public strangers. It is better to ask people to clarify their opinions and accept that as the best evidence of their inner thoughts.”

“It is loserthink to judge people by their much younger selves. People change. And they usually improve.”

What to watch out for: Conspiracy Theories and How to Know You Fell for One

“Being absolutely right and being spectacularly wrong feel exactly the same.”

“If your view of reality is consistent with the past but falls to do a good job predicting the near future, you might be in a cultlike organization with a manufactured worldview. If members of your group discourage you from listening to opposing views, it’s time to plan your escape.”

Scott Adams on Loserthink, Part 7

In the book, Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America, Scott Adams analyzed and discussed ways to teach us how to eliminate our biases and to sharpen our ability to think critically.

These are some of my favorite quotes and takeaways from reading the book.

How can we minimize our tendency for Loserthink by not copying things that pundits say?

What to watch out for: Moral Equivalency

“If you are accusing someone of making inappropriate morel equivalences, you are probably experiencing Loserthink of the mind reader variety.”

What to watch out for: Word-Thinking

“If your only complaint about another person’s behavior is that it might normalize something, you might not have any reasons to back your opinion.”

“If you find yourself calling a plan problematic and you can’t give some reasonable-sounding examples to back up your opinion, you might be engaging loserthink.”

What to watch out for: The Hypocrisy Defense

“If you make a mistake and your best response is that other people do similar things, you are engaging in loserthink.”

What to watch out for: Fairness

“Arguing for fairness is loserthink because no two people will agree on what it looks like. The exception is when you are trying to persuade, in which case rationality matters less.”

What to watch out for: Feels-The-Same

“If you find that your best argument depends on the predictive or persuasive characteristics of analogies, you are likely in a mental prison of your own making.”

What to watch out for: Friction

“Add friction to any human choice will reduce the number of people making that choice. To assume otherwise is loserthink.”

What to watch out for: Mentioning Is Not Comparing

“If two or more items are mentioned in the same conversation, that doesn’t mean anyone is comparing them for relative value.”

What to watch out for: “Do Your Own Research”

“For big, complicated political questions, “doing your own research” is a waste of time.”

What to watch out for: “Be Yourself”

“Never be yourself if you can make yourself into something better through your conscious actions. You are what you do.”

What to watch out for: “Coward!”

“It is loserthink to call people cowards after those people risked their lives for a cause.”

What to watch out for: “Apologist!” and Words Like That

“If your response to a disagreement is to assign your opponent a dismissive label, you have surrendered the moral and intellectual high ground to wallow in loserthink.”

What to watch out for: “Why Didn’t You Do It Sooner?”

“If someone does something you appreciate, it is loserthink to ask why it didn’t happen sooner.”

Scott Adams on Loserthink, Part 6

In the book, Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America, Scott Adams analyzed and discussed ways to teach us how to eliminate our biases and to sharpen our ability to think critically.

These are some of my favorite quotes and takeaways from reading the book.

How can we minimize our tendency for Loserthink by thinking like an economist?

What to watch out for: Money Influence

“A basic understanding of economics can help you “see around corners” that others cannot.”

“People who understand economics can more easily spot hoaxes because money drives human behavior in predictable ways.”

“Be skeptical of any experts who have a financial incentive to mislead you and almost no risk on their end.”

What to watch out for: Ends Justify the Means

“If you think in terms of “the ends justify the means” instead of “costs compared to benefits,” you are buying into loserthink.”

What to watch out for: How to Compare Things

“If you have a string opinion about a proposed plan but you have not compared it to the next best alternative, you are not part of a rational conversation.”

What to watch out for: Halfopinions

“If your opinion considers only the benefits or only the costs of plan, you might be in a mental prison.”

What to watch out for: Time Value of Money

“A dollar you have today is worth a dollar. But a dollar you might get in the future, if things go as predicted (which is rare), is worth a lot less.”

What to watch out for: Consider the Alternatives

“If you have only one mortal risk, it might make sense to spend huge amounts of money to drive that risk to zero. But if you have multiple mortal risks, it might make more sense to allocate your money across several risks.”

What to watch out for: Confusopolies

“If you find yourself experiencing certainty in a complex situation, you are probably experiencing loserthink.”

What to watch out for: Straight-Line Predictions

“Over the long term, straight-line predictions are loserthink, because history rarely travel in a straight line.”

Scott Adams on Loserthink, Part 5

In the book, Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America, Scott Adams analyzed and discussed ways to teach us how to eliminate our biases and to sharpen our ability to think critically.

These are some of my favorite quotes and takeaways from reading the book.

How can we minimize our tendency for Loserthink by thinking like a scientist?

What to watch out for: Coincidences

“Sometimes coincidences tell you something useful. But 90 percent of the time they mislead you. Never be too confident about an opinion that depends solely on interpreting a coincidence.”

What to watch out for: Anecdotal Evidence

“If you are reaching a general conclusion about a big topic by looking at anecdotal evidence, you are engaging in Loserthink.”

What to watch out for: “What if the Opposite is True?”

“Always ask yourself if the opposite of your theory could be true. Doing so keeps you humble and less susceptible to bias until you get to the truth of the situation.”

What to watch out for: Judging a Group by its Worst Members

“Don’t believe that every member of a group is as bad as its worst 5 percent. If you do, you’re probably among the worst five percent of whatever groups you are in”

What to watch out for: Proving a Negative

“Rarely is it possible to prove something isn’t true. But sometimes we can prove things are true.”

How can we minimize our tendency for Loserthink by thinking like an entrepreneur?

What to watch out for: Couch Lock

“Learn to think in microsteps. Of you are experiencing couch lock, try wiggling one finger. Then build from there.”

What to watch out for: Staying in Your Lane

“Sticking with what you know ensures you stay where you are. Take some chances. Leave your lane and build some skills.”

What to watch out for: Personal Control

“You can learn to think like a rich person by consuming books, blog posts, and podcasts from the authors who can teach you how. If this sore of reading isn’t your thing, make it your thing, one microstep at a time.”

What to watch out for: Humility and Testing

“Find a way to test your assumptions in a small way so no one gets hurt.”

Scott Adams on Loserthink, Part 4

In the book, Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America, Scott Adams analyzed and discussed ways to teach us how to eliminate our biases and to sharpen our ability to think critically.

These are some of my favorite quotes and takeaways from reading the book.

How can we minimize our tendency for Loserthink by thinking like an engineer?

What to watch out for: Professional Jealousy

“If you are wondering how skeptical you should be about expert advice on complicated issues, keep in mind that the next expert probably has no respect for the last expert. And vice versa.”

What to watch out for: Separating Cause and Solution

“The best solution to a problem is often unrelated to who is at fault. It is Loserthink to believe otherwise.”

What to watch out for: One-Variable Illusion

“If you analyze a complicated situation with multiple variables in play, and you concluded that only one of them was decisive, there’s a good chance you are practicing Loserthink.”

How can we minimize our tendency for Loserthink by thinking like a leader?

What to watch out for: The Directional Truth Filter

“If you find yourself obsessing over the accuracy of facts versus the direction those facts will lead you, you might be in a mental prison.”

What to watch out for: Confusing Hyperbole with Legitimate Opinion

“It is Loserthink to take political hyperbole literally.”

“It is Loserthink to attack an opponent by acting as dumb as they act. It might feel good, but it isn’t a winning strategy.”

What to watch out for: System versus Goals

“Goals are for loserthinkers. Systems are for winners.”

Scott Adams on Loserthink, Part 3

In the book, Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America, Scott Adams analyzed and discussed ways to teach us how to eliminate our biases and to sharpen our ability to think critically.

These are some of my favorite quotes and takeaways from reading the book.

How can we minimize our tendency for Loserthink by thinking like an artist?

What to watch out for: Failure of Imagination.

“If you can’t imagine any other explanation for a set of facts, it might be because you are bad at imagining things.”

How can we minimize our tendency for Loserthink by thinking like a historian?

What to watch out for: Assuming the history we learned is accurate

“If you believe you learned an accurate version of history in school, you are probably wrong.”

What to watch out for: Allowing history to have a stronghold on us

“If bad memories are keeping you from being happy, try crowding out the destructive memories with new and interesting thoughts. Stay busy, in mind and body, and time is on your side.”

“History (even the fake kind) can be useful for persuading others through guilt. But don’t make the mistake of persuading yourself that history should matter to your choices today.”

“Focusing on the past when the present offers sufficient paths to success is Loserthink. It is better to focus on your own systems for success, and when you succeed, watch how winning fixes most problems.”

What to watch out for: History Repeats

“History doesn’t repeat, at least not in any way you can use to accurately predict the future. (The exceptions are simple situations.)”

What to watch out for: The Slippery Slope

“Belief in slippery slopes is Loserthink. It is more useful to look at forces and counterforces to see where things are likely to end up.”

Watch to watch out for: Privacy is Overrated.

“If you think more privacy is always better, that is a case of Loserthink. Every situation is different. Sometimes privacy is the problem that prevents the solutions.”

Scott Adams on Loserthink, Part 2

In the book, Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America, Scott Adams analyzed and discussed ways to teach us how to eliminate our biases and to sharpen our ability to think critically.

These are some of my favorite quotes and takeaways from reading the book.

So, how can we minimize our tendency for Loserthink by thinking like a psychologist?

What to watch out for: The Mind Reading Illusion.

“If our opinion depends on reliably knowing another person’s inner thoughts, we might be experiencing Loserthink.”

“If an ordinary explanation fits the facts, but we have chosen an extraordinary interpretation instead, we might have too much confidence in our opinion.”

What to watch out for: Branding People Evil

“If we think we can gaze into the soul of a stranger and see evil, we might be experiencing a Loserthink hallucination.”

What to watch out for: Occam’s Razor

“In science, the simplest explanation that fits the facts is preferred. In life, we are all under the illusion that our explanations of things are the simplest one.”

What to watch out for: Projection

“Psychological projection is a real phenomenon, but if we think untrained people can identify it in strangers, we might be experiencing Loserthink.”

What to watch out for: The Ego Problem

“When we are fit, we will feel more confident in any situation.”

“Effectiveness is more important than ego.”

“If we think ego is who we are, as opposed to a tool we can dial up and down as needed, we might be experiencing Loserthink.”

“Put ourselves in potentially embarrassing situations on a regular basis for practice. If we get embarrassed as planned, watch one year later we are still alive. Maybe we even have a funny story because of it.”

“Note how other people’s embarrassments mean little to us when we are an observe. That is how much our embarrassments mean to them: nothing.”

What to watch out for: Focusing on What is Wrong

“If we cannot think of anything good about a situation, and yet we observe that other can, we might experiencing Loserthink.”

“If we allow our mental shelf space to fill up with negative thoughts, we are punishing ourselves with an unhealthy form of Loserthink.”