Your most vivid memories are often flawed
Known as flashbulb memories, whenever something traumatic happens in your life your brain takes an emotionally charged “photo”. For example, anyone old enough to remember 9/11 or the Challenger disaster could probably describe in vivid detail where they were and what they were doing when the news broke. The only problem is that a lot of those vivid details would be completely wrong and several studies have shown that the strong emotions associated with the memory often skew your recollection.
You choose and vote for the first person on the list
Of course, we know you don’t always do this, but people generally favor the first item in a list regardless of whether it’s a menu or a ballot. In fact, it has been shown that having your name listed in the middle of a ballot decreases your chances of winning by 2.5%
You overestimate your reaction to future events
You are terrible at predicting the future. To be more precise, you are terrible at estimating your reaction to events in the future, both positive and negative. It has been shown that people tend to believe positive events like landing the perfect job or getting married will make them much happier than they really will and the same goes for the negative events. The truth of the matter is, however, that your happiness levels will generally stay about the same and they always revert to a steady norm.
You have a friend limit
While you may be social media fiend who has 4,000 friends on Facebook, the hard truth is that you don’t really have that many friends, at least not close friends. Psychologists and anthropologists will tell you that the maximum number of close ties a human can have hovers somewhere between 50 and 150.
You blame a person’s behavior on their personality…unless the person is you
Think back to the last time you got cut off in traffic. Did you say to yourself, “Man, what an idiot”, or did you think,”Gee, she probably had a bad day.” Chances are that you went with the former. In psychology circles this is known as the fundamental attribution error and it essentially states that while we blame the behavior of others on their internal attributes, we blame our own on the external (I had no choice, I had to cut her off to avoid a collision). Sadly, even if you are aware of our predisposition towards making unfair judgements, it is notoriously hard to stop doing, so you will most likely continue making this fundamental error.