JZ and Anchoring

Anchoring or focalism is a cognitive bias that describes the common human tendency to rely too heavily on the first piece of information offered (the “anchor”) when making decisions. During decision making, anchoring occurs when individuals use an initial piece of information to make subsequent judgments. Once an anchor is set, other judgments are made by adjusting away from that anchor, and there is a bias toward interpreting other information around the anchor. For example, the initial price offered for a used car sets the standard for the rest of the negotiations, so that prices lower than the initial price seem more reasonable even if they are still higher than what the car is really worth.”

The really tragic thing is that I’ve had this tool at my fingertips since July, and didn’t read up on it and internalise the lesson. My procrastination strikes again. If I had had this tool at my disposal on Friday, I could have avoided this whole mess with JZ. I am placing too much blame at my feet, there are usually two parties involved to create a situation, but I can’t focus on what she may have or may have not done because I then won’t learn the lesson and come away from this poorer but definitely wiser.

I know I shouldn’t have focussed on that first piece of information – the statement, “I don’t want to be in a relationship”, and then used it to dictate the rest of the interaction. The additional information she gave me after that, the why and the how, added context to the first statement and ultimately changed it’s meaning from something negative into something more positive.



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