Act As If You Don’t Know…Because You Really Don’t

This COVID-19 situation is making people act in very predictably irrational ways. Some people are arguing that COVID-19 is some kind of hoax, that it’s been made up to destabilize the economy on purpose. I’ve heard other people argue that the virus was made in a lab, it wasn’t; it comes from nature.

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Other arguments I’ve heard are the following:

  • The government is letting this happen for political reasons;
  • this is a biowarfare test by China to destabilize other governments around the world;
  • this is a purge;
  • it’s not as bad as it looks and governments are overreacting.

These are all very non-objective reactions and assumptions.

In situations like these, where a handful of people have enough expertise to figure out what’s going in, you have to act as if you don’t know. Of course you don’t know, what I mean is don’t overreact and jump to conclusions before doing some homework on your own beyond reading articles, or talking with people who think like you.

Instead, ask yourself:

  • how did I arrive at this belief?
  • why do I believe it to be true?
  • what if I’m wrong?
  • what would it take to change my mind?

And look for ways to invalidate your current belief. Basically, instead of coming up with all types of reasons why this is happenning, that feel good in your mind, look for reasons why you’re wrong.

Irrationality plagues us all. Yet, we all have the ability to see more clearly if we choose to do so by questioning our assumptions and beliefs.

Bottom line: The ability to change your mind when presented with information that contradicts your beliefs is the greatest ability you can have.