You may be asking yourself, “What is confirmation bias?”
According to the dictionary, confirmation bias is the tendency to interpret new evidence as confirmation of one’s existing beliefs or theories.
And here’s the thing, we are all vulnerable to it.
One of the first things you can do to combat it is to be open to evidence that’s not consistent with your beliefs and theories.
A good example of confirmation bias is a conservative who only listens to Fox News, Newsmax and other “conservative” channels. While watching/listening to other news outlets may be frustrating at times, it’s important to hear what the other side has to say.
Confirmation bias can seep into nearly every area of your life…if you let it.
But knowing about it—and knowing how you can prevent doing it—is key to making better, more informed decisions.
Here are some tips to help you get started down your path of kicking confirmation bias to the curb:
- Don’t be afraid of opposing viewpoints—be OK with having a disagreement. A good debate can be fun!
- Ask good questions.
- Don’t close yourself off from new information.
- For example, if we would have kept trying to figure out how to make transportation by horse better, we may have never invented other means of transportation like cars!
- Acknowledge that there’s always something new to learn.
- Allow yourself to be wrong.
- This is a hard one for me as I love being right (just ask Bitcoin Ben), but I’m working on it! It’s a process.
- Read entire articles. (not just headlines and/or summaries)
- This one is difficult for many of us as our attention spans are shrinking dramatically. Our daughter rarely listens to an entire song for goodness sake!
- Seek out information from various trustworthy sources.
- This one can be challenging as our confirmation bias can come into play here, too. Just consume information from many different sources. Bitcoin Ben is really good at doing this.
- Surround yourself with a diverse group of people.
- This one can be difficult, too. We lost friends because we’re conservatives—and they’re not.
And the biggest tip of all—and one that Bitcoin Ben touts—as well as many others—DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH!
Forgive the all caps, but this cannot be stressed enough! So many people are quick to blame someone else for a decision they made.
Ben has tons of great information—and he does have many sources and is very knowledgeable—but even he would tell you—do your own research.
This is your life, and when it comes to cryptocurrency, your money at stake. Don’t make a decision and then blame someone else. It’s called personal responsibility. Own your decisions—the good and the bad ones.
One of the best things I read preparing for this—and served as a great reminder—is we can all be better listeners. Listen to what others have to say on topics—especially if you disagree with them.
It doesn’t mean that you will agree in the end, but it means that you likely learned something new, if nothing else, their perspective, which is likely different from yours.
Remember, God gave us one mouth and two ears! Use them wisely.
1 – https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-a-confirmation-bias-2795024
2 – https://www.simplypsychology.org/confirmation-bias.html
3 – https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/avoiding-psychological-bias.htm#:~:text=How%20to%20Avoid%20Confirmation%20Bias,discuss%20your%20thoughts%20with%20others.
4 – https://www.lifehack.org/397673/how-to-expand-your-mind (Good quote: ” We were given only 1 mouth, but 2 ears. Listen twice as much as you speak and you will be well on your way to expanding your mind.”)
5 – https://hbr.org/tip/2017/07/to-avoid-confirmation-bias-in-your-decisions-consider-the-alternatives
6 – https://www.masterclass.com/articles/how-to-identify-confirmation-bias
7 – https://www.forbes.com/sites/jarretjackson/2020/08/26/three-ways-to-avoid-bias-in-decision-making/?sh=4a50324ca715
8 – https://www.britannica.com/science/confirmation-bias
9 – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zoWTb3KP-k
Kelly Wisness-Semchee has been Bitcoin Ben’s wife for more than 11 years. She has spent 20+ years in marketing and communications for various companies, including 13 years in healthcare specifically. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Relations and an MBA. Kelly resides with “Bitcoin” Ben, their fur babies “Litecoin” Little and Lacie, and daughter Alexa in the St. Louis area. Learn more at https://www.linkedin.com/in/kwisness/.
Copyright © 2021 by Kelly Wisness-Semchee