Thursday, 14 August 2008

Fascinating Book

Finished August 12
Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior by Ori Brafman and Rom Brafman, read by John Apicella
This short book was so fascinating that after I finished listening to it, I listened to it again, the second time sharing it with a fellow librarian as we commuted together. She also found it fascinating.
The Brafman brothers use examples and research to show the many forces that cause us to engage in irrational behavior. These include loss aversion, the diagnosis bias, and the chameleon effect. Loss aversion is the tendency to go to lengths to avoid a perceived loss. Diagnosis bias is our tendency to ignore information that doesn't fit with our initial take on a person or situation. The chameleon effect is the tendency to take on behaviors that have been arbitrarily assigned to us, sometimes even without our knowledge. The many examples that they use to show how these tendencies show up in real life situations and cause unhappiness, loss and even death are eye-opening. They include an epilogue that gives tips on avoiding the pull of irrational behavior that are useful.
As I said, I found it utterly fascinating.

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