Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Brain making poor analogies

This is the longest I have gone between blog posts in the past 12 years.  I still jot down thoughts, six to twelve times every day, but in private.

I realized recently that I pattern-match current situations to ones I have seen before, to predict how things might turn out. But the bad thing is that my brain will pattern match to situations that are very superficially similar, and also to fictional accounts like tv shows.

E.g. I will catch myself thinking things like "I have been working on this for 2 years. Last time I worked on a product for 2 years, the team faced challenge Y.  So I need to stay alert for Y."  But length of time is a meaningless signal!  There are much more direct signals like user feedback.

Or I will think "I am really happy with Aff.  On Sex and the City, how long was Samantha happy with Smith before problems arose?  If we've been happy for longer than that, I can feel reassured."  These are fictional characters!  

I welcome any tips for stopping these inaccurate comparisons.