Posts Tagged ironic process
Don’t think about a white bear.
Try really hard not to let any thoughts of a white bear enter your head.
So often when we are trying to avoid a particular thought or action, we end up thinking, saying or doing precisely what we were trying to steer clear of.
If you have ever been given feedback on your presentation skills which has highlighted a particular mannerism or repeated phrase, you will know how hard it is to stop it.
A review article in Science by Daniel Wegner examines the reasons for this annoying tendency. In How to think, say or do precisely the worst thing for any occasion, Wegner talks about two processes in the brain.
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