Black and white hindsight

…there are three levels of hindsight bias that stack on top of each other, from basic memory processes up to higher-level inference and belief. The first level of hindsight bias, memory distortion, involves misremembering an earlier opinion or judgment (“I said it would happen”). The second level, inevitability, centers on our belief that the event was inevitable (“It had to happen”). And the third level, foreseeability, involves the belief that we personally could have foreseen the event (“I knew it would happen”).
The researchers argue that certain factors fuel our tendency toward hindsight bias. Research shows that we selectively recall information that confirms what we know to be true and we try to create a narrative that makes sense out of the information we have. When this narrative is easy to generate, we interpret that to mean that the outcome must have been foreseeable. Furthermore, research suggests that we have a need for closure that motivates us to see the world as orderly and predictable and to do whatever we can to promote a positive view of ourselves. –Science Daily

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a scene in which your protagonist displays hindsight bias. How does this affect the next thing he or she decides to do?

Journaling Prompt: How do you see yourself operating with hindsight bias?

Art Prompt: Hindsight Bias

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Inform your audience about hindsight bias and how it may be affecting their perspective.

Photo Credit: Tim J Keegan on Flickr

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