Monday, June 11, 2018

Advantages vs. Challenges

The human mind is an ungrateful one. It tends to focus on when things go wrong, as opposed to when they go right. 

How often do we thank the Eibishter? We tend to ask for assistance or complain more often. 

Today's society likes to say that everything is terrible. But the experts point out, in exasperation, that compared to, say, all of history, we are doing quite, quite well. 

Sendhil Mullainathan notes this quirk of psychology in terms of economic advantages. When successful businesspeople are asked how they made their achievements, chances are they will elaborate on the many challenges they had to overcome, as opposed to all the resources they were gifted, whether by birth or other circumstances. 
We tend to remember the obstacles we have overcome more vividly than the advantages we have been given. . . both Democrats and Republicans believe that electoral maps are not apportioned to their advantage. The scholars also find that, within families, people tend to think their parents were tougher on them than their siblings recognize.
Those sneaky, crafty voices can create a completely different narrative in one's mind. But it really all depends how we choose to see our world. Happy people aren't happy because they have better lives than others. They are happy because they want to be. 

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