Psychology

Blink by Malcolm Gladwell



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The blink of an eye happens in milliseconds. The ability of our brains to decipher information and come to conclusions happens just as fast. Blink, by Malcolm Gladwell offers a detailed examination of the power of the sub-conscience and its ability to affect our lives either by causing one to come to the wrong conclusion or to one that is correct. Gladwell asserts that one can learn to control and improve rapid cognition and use it as a powerful tool.
The human brain has a center for conscious thought which is what we hear and feel thinking when we think, to describe it. The conscious mind technically is the essence of personality and the part we are constantly aware of. However, the subconscious, while it does not have the traits and characteristics that define a person as unique acts more as a powerful computer that logically sorts things out at a quick pace while your conscious thoughts take one thing at a time and process them more slowly. Blink is a study of how the sub-conscience can be relied on to quickly make decisions. The surprising aspects of Gladwell's study encompass many strange facts; for example, when people are forced to make a spontaneous choice or evaluation they are often more accurate when predicting something in a small amount of time than when they have a larger amount of time to think about it.
Almost immediately the subconscious mind can interpret the variables in a situation and commence to make assessment more often than not of the correct answer or behavior to proceed with. However, problems arise when the mind is overloaded with information or too many variables. Studies show, and Gladwell generously provides many examples and stories when proving a point, that when given more information than a few solid key facts, one's rapid cognition abilities rapidly deteriorate and accuracy is skewed. One of the most provocative facts revealed by Gladwell is that we actually can make better decisions with less information.
Besides outlining the amazing powers of the mind, Gladwell also contributes the facts about how the mind often fails to judge correctly. Gladwell explains stereotypes on a deeper level. They are, unfortunately, the tendency of the mind to associate certain outcomes with certain factors that may or may not actually turn out to be true. The sub-conscience is an undeniably important tool as disclosed by Gladwell. Consequently it can be duped by acquiring automatic assumptions. Gladwell emphasizes that people can improve their decision making skills by learning to recognize and avoid stereotypes generated in the sub-conscience. He also illuminates the fact that under situations of intense stress people lose their ability to sort through a situation efficiently, explaining that many policemen are no longer allowed to engage in high-speed chases because the excitement causes a paralysis of rational thinking and has led policemen to unjustly beat or shoot people. Gladwell ends Blink calling for a wider recognition of the power and role of the sub-conscience and the necessity of taking it into account when making a decision, assessment, or analyzing someone's behavior.
Blink reads quickly and provides readers with a nice background of psychology. Gladwell is renowned as an extremely energizing writer as his books progress quickly and logically. Blink will not leave the reader dissatisfied and supplies a bundle of information worth knowing.

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