The title is inspired from …Anita Archer…Look…Lean…whisper –strategy for sharing with a partner.

So am sharing a few biases which I found around me….few of which I am guilty of myself.

Confirmation bias:I am oversensitive to recognizing patterns especially about something negative.( Old news..I know)

My claim: 13 is an unlucky number for me

My evidence: I was thrown out of my in-laws house on 13th, my late mother was in the ICU–her room number was 13, there were 13 days between my mom’s birthday and death day, a very dear and close friend of mine lost their spouse on 13th. And last and most powerful the letter “M” is the 13th letter of the alphabet and hence I am unlucky…..laugh if you must…I know that you are…but that’s what my crooked mind is up to.

Social proof/Chauffeur knowledge: Limited understanding of anything but doing it because everyone else is doing it

My claim: Whats app messages discussing intellectual topics are totally useless

My Evidence: I have tried and done it, just probing a little bit further to anyone who passes on such seemingly intellectual posts and most of the time they have no clue about the topic at all, and sometimes to cover up they just keep asking the same question in other groups and than keep posting those answers in the group….(Deja moo…hmmm)

Illusion of control and Framing (Not what you say, but how you say makes all the difference) are other two biases which I find mostly in school, with teachers who are unable to manage students and the latter mostly used by effective leaders(..this should not be a surprise;) to get work done.

So yes, we are surrounded and crowded by biases and sometimes just sometimes they strike us so bad and we feel like we are ready to explode like it’s Diwali!!!!




  • Ayman Shaikhmahmud

    Confirmation bias is something that I have been wrestling with too since a long time, and yes Mariyam, I can identify with your uneasiness with the number 13. Mine is something really silly when I look at it from an intellectual perspective but it always troubles me. I have this bias/superstition/paradigm that in the morning if the milk or tea I am boiling spills over then I have a bad day. It happens without fail every time. I have identified it as a bias I know there is no base to my belief, but there it is. In fact Mariyam, there was this one hotel that we were staying in Bangkok that did not have a 13th floor!

  • I can relate to you. but I don’t know why I still can’t accept it as a bias because I feel it true.

    My claim: If see the watch and it shows 1:38pm I start waiting for something good to happen with me. And it always happens!!!! 🙂

  • I am really not sure whether my actions are the example of confirmation bias. But, it has become my habit to look at the horoscope for my sun sign trying to find out a way that the one who predicts and writes statements for the different sun signs must know about my life and about me more than me!!! I mean, I believe somewhere this does not make sense and on the other hand I would try to find evidences related to the same.

    • Vardan Lalitkumar Kabra

      Yes this tendency to look for only those facts that agree with reality, when looking at horoscopes is definitely confirmation bias. You don’t look at all those predictions that didn’t hold true because of your belief that horoscopes are “real”.

  • Brilliant Analogy!! However, sometimes I wonder why real sane, well-read, ‘rational human-being like us are taken in by biases such as the ‘unlucky number’ one.
    I especially liked your point about Illusion of control and framing with respect to classroom management. I have a hard time convincing teachers sometimes that being content sound and respectful to students is all it takes to have a great class.
    Didn’t understand the whatsapp thing though….

  • Mariyam ma’am I too agree with you that 13 numbers is the unlucky number. It happens with me also. I was at my friends place and overheard this statement from one of her relative (Bua ji) when I was studying in 5th standard. She casually passed this statement unknowingly that my birth date is also 13.

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