Should You Trust Your Gut Instinct?

 

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do you ever get that feeling in your gut
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that something is the right or wrong
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decision but you don’t know why our
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intuition is often deemed as mysticism
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or linked with telepathy and
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premonitions
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but is there a science behind it should
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you trust your intuition understanding
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something immediately without conscious
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reasoning is less about seeing into the
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future and more to do with pattern
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recognition if I showed you this layout
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of an actual chess game for five seconds
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could you reproduce it studies show that
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most chest novices can’t recreate 25% of
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it but chess masters do it with 95
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percent accuracy however if the task is
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repeated with the pieces in completely
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random positions both novices and
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masters only recall 25 percent the
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Masters don’t have photographic memory
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they simply use their knowledge and
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intuition based on patterns they have
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seen over years of practice our brain
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processes information through both slow
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and fast thinking
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for example this math problem will cause
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a stress response and your brain will
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kick in too slow thinking to solve it
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but this picture involves fast thinking
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understanding the emotion of sadness is
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an immediate brain response and this
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fast thinking is where intuition lies
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in a similar study on the Japanese board
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game shogi participants were asked to
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solve a checkmate move within one second
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with no time for conscious analysis
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brain scans showed no activation of the
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cortex in expert shogi players the part
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of the brain responsible for conscious
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thought instead the basal ganglia which
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is linked to habit formation and
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automatic behaviors was triggered
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interestingly when it comes to complex
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decisions like buying a house while many
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believe careful thought with the pros
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and cons list is best one study actually
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found that participants made better
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choices when they went with their snap
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decision it turns out we often only take
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into account a subset of relevant
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information which can lead to us
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weighing the importance of each
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attribute in accurately the study also
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found that those who trusted their gut
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were more satisfied with their decisions
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in the long run than those who thought
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through the process carefully
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however when making simple purchases
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like which toothpaste to buy where
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variables are not as complex
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the study found intentional thought and
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research
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to be helpful think you can identify the
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sound of your own voice surprisingly
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after listening to a recording of many
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voices in succession including their own
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75% of participants in the study made a
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mistake recognizing their own voice but
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the most fascinating part is that their
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skin conductance was also measured and
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these levels went much higher when their
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own voice came on even though they
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didn’t consciously recognize their voice
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suggesting they had ignored their
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intuition which knew the correct answer
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first this same phenomenon was shown in
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a card game that uses four decks of
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cards the participants would select a
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card from any pile which would either be
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good or bad without them knowing at
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first decks a and B had more bad cards
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while C and D had more good cards after
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choosing 10 cards the participants had
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no idea what was happening but by 50
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cards most would suspect that some decks
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were better than others finally after 80
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cards they could articulate that decks a
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and B were bad and CND worked good but
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again even though they knew it
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consciously their skin conductance
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levels would rise as early as the first
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hand cards in response to reaching for
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pile a and B their skin was already
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making unconscious signals about the
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right choice before their conscious
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minded of course their skin didn’t know
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the correct answer but their unconscious
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mind began understanding patterns before
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their conscious mind had so is following
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your intuition always the route to go
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not in cases of empathy it turns out a
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study involving over 900 participants
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found that when it came to accurately
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interpreting and understanding the
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feelings of others systemic thinking or
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carefully analyzing the information
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available before making a decision was
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more successful than going with what
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feels right relying on our past
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experiences is essentially how our
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intuition is formed and it has helped
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our ancestors determine friend from foe
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however we were given two systems of
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Thinking Fast and Slow and we recommend
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that it’s best to follow them both
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special thanks to audible for supporting
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week we wanted to recommend the book
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