How our desires shape our beliefs


The Influential Mind, Author: Tali Sharot.

By Tali Sharot – A study conducted at Harvard University found that people were willing to forgo money so that their opinions would be broadcast to others. A brain-imaging scan showed that when people received the opportunity to communicate their opinions to others, their brain’s reward center was strongly activated.

We experience a burst of pleasure when we share our thoughts, and this drives us to communicate. It is a useful feature of our brain, because it ensures that knowledge, experience and ideas do not get buried with the person who first had them, and that as a society we benefit from the products of many minds.

What determines whether you affect the way others think and behave or are ignored?

You may assume that numbers and statistics are what you need to change their point of view. Well, you can imagine my dismay when I discovered that all these experiments pointed to the reality that people are not driven by facts.

The problem with an approach that prioritizes information is that it ignores the core of what makes us human: our motives, our fears, our hopes, our desires, our prior beliefs. more>

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