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Science & Medicine
Social Sciences

You Are Not So Smart

Updated 8 days ago

Science & Medicine
Social Sciences
Read more

You Are Not So Smart is a show about psychology that celebrates science and self delusion. In each episode, we explore what we've learned so far about reasoning, biases, judgments, and decision-making.

Read more

You Are Not So Smart is a show about psychology that celebrates science and self delusion. In each episode, we explore what we've learned so far about reasoning, biases, judgments, and decision-making.

iTunes Ratings

878 Ratings
Average Ratings
673
121
33
22
29

Great podcast

By bk nurse rn - May 14 2019
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Awesome podcast for building your critical thinking toolbox

Excellent

By aRghJaay - Sep 04 2018
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This podcast is most excellent.

iTunes Ratings

878 Ratings
Average Ratings
673
121
33
22
29

Great podcast

By bk nurse rn - May 14 2019
Read more
Awesome podcast for building your critical thinking toolbox

Excellent

By aRghJaay - Sep 04 2018
Read more
This podcast is most excellent.
Cover image of You Are Not So Smart

You Are Not So Smart

Updated 8 days ago

Read more

You Are Not So Smart is a show about psychology that celebrates science and self delusion. In each episode, we explore what we've learned so far about reasoning, biases, judgments, and decision-making.

Rank #1: 001 - Attention

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In this episode of the You Are Not So Smart Podcast we discuss attention and interview co-author of "The Invisible Gorilla" Daniel Simons. Also, at the end, we eat an Oreo fudge cookie brownie and discuss the foreign language effect.
Apr 22 2012
40 mins
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Rank #2: 160 - Maybe You Should Talk to Someone

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In Lori Gottlieb's new book, Maybe You Should Talk to Someone, she opens with a quote from James Baldwin that reads, "Nothing is more desirable than to be released from an affliction, but nothing is more frightening than to be divested of a crutch."

In this episode, we talk about therapy, how it works, the misconceptions around it, and how people go from resisting change to embracing the behaviors required to alter their own thoughts and feelings when stuck in destructive, unhealthy loops. You'll also learn the difference between idiot compassion and wise compassion.

-- Show Notes at: youarenotsosmart.com --

-- Become a patron at: www.patreon.com/youarenotsosmart --

SPONSORS

• Bombas: www.bombas.com/smart
• Squarespace: www.squarespace.com/sosmart -- offer code: SOSMART
Aug 12 2019
46 mins
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Rank #3: 159 - Uncivil Agreement (rebroadcast)

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In this episode, we welcome Lilliana Mason on the program to discuss her new book, Uncivil Agreement, which focuses on the idea: “Our conflicts are over who we think we are, rather than reasoned differences of opinion.”

Personally, I feel like this is just about the most important thing the social sciences are studying right now, and I think Mason is one of the its most brilliant scientists -- I promise, the insights you are about to hear will change the way you think about politics, tweeting, elections, and arguing with people on the other side of just about everything.

-- Show Notes at: youarenotsosmart.com --

-- Become a patron at: www.patreon.com/youarenotsosmart --

SPONSORS

• The Great Courses Plus: www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/smart
• Squarespace: www.squarespace.com/sosmart -- offer code: SOSMART
Jul 28 2019
1 hour 21 mins
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Rank #4: 143 - How to Talk to People About Things

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In this episode, we sit down with negotiation expert Misha Glouberman who explains how to talk to people about things -- that is, how to avoid the pitfalls associated with debate when two or more people attempt to come to an agreement that will be mutually beneficial.

- Show notes at: www.youarenotsosmart.com
- Become a patron at: www.patreon.com/youarenotsosmart

SPONSORS

• The Great Courses: www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/smart
• Squarespace: www.squarespace.com/sosmart
Dec 17 2018
1 hour 46 mins
Play

Rank #5: 093 - The Backfire Effect - Part One

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We don’t treat all of our beliefs the same.

The research shows that when a strong-yet-erroneous, belief is challenged, yes, you might experience some temporary weakening of your convictions, some softening of your certainty, but most people rebound from that and not only reassert their original belief at its original strength, but go beyond that and dig in their heels, deepening their resolve over the long run.

Psychologists call this the backfire effect, and this episode is the first of three shows exploring this well-documented and much-studied psychological phenomenon, one that you’ve likely encountered quite a bit lately.

In this episode, we explore its neurological underpinning as two neuroscientists at the University of Southern California’s Brain and Creativity Institute explain how their latest research sheds new light on how the brain reacts when its deepest beliefs are challenged.

- Show notes at: www.youarenotsosmart.com
- Become a patron at: www.patreon.com/youarenotsosmart

SPONSORS

• The Great Courses: www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/smart
• Casper Mattresses: www.casper.com/sosmart | Offer Code = sosmart
Jan 13 2017
44 mins
Play

Rank #6: 061 - Mindfulness - Michael Taft

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You have the power to wield neuroplasticity to your advantage.

Just as you can change your body at the atomic level by lifting weights, you can willfully alter your brain by...thinking in a certain way. In this episode we explore using your brain to change your brain at the level of neurons and synapses beyond what is possible through other methods like learning a new language or earning a degree in chemistry. With mindfulness meditation, the evidence seems to suggest that one can achieve a level of change that would be impossible otherwise. The more you attempt to focus, the better you get at focusing on command, and so a real change begins taking place - you slowly become able to think differently, to hold thoughts differently and to dismiss thoughts that before led to attention difficulties or what feels like unwanted thoughts or clutter - and that’s not magical or the result of shaking hands with a deity, it’s biological. Listen as author and meditation teacher Michael Taft explains the benefits of secular, scientific practice of modern mindfulness meditation
Oct 22 2015
1 hour 22 mins
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Rank #7: 002 - The Illusion of Knowledge

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In this episode of the You Are Not So Smart Podcast we discuss the illusion of knowledge with Christopher Chabris, co-author of "The Invisible Gorilla." After that, we eat a triple-ginger molasses cookie while discussing non-believed false memories.
May 08 2012
47 mins
Play

Rank #8: 122 - Tribal Psychology

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The evidence is clear that humans value being good members of their tribes much more than they value being correct. We will choose to be wrong if it keeps us in good standing with our peers.

In this episode, we explore how that affects politics and science communication, and how it is driving our growing partisan divide.
Feb 26 2018
1 hour 8 mins
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Rank #9: 059 - The Illusion Of Control - Michael And Sarah Bennett

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In the show, you'll hear Michael elaborate on why that is. In this episode, our guests are Harvard-trained psychiatrist Michael I. Bennett and his comedy writer daughter Sarah Bennett whose new book, Fuck Feelings, makes the case for accepting the illusion of control as a guiding principle for living a better life.

Time and again, study after study, psychologists have found that in situations in which the outcomes are clearly, undoubtable random or otherwise outside the realm of control, people tend to latch onto any shred of evidence that could be interpreted otherwise. It's a habit that can lead to self-loathing, ineffectual strategies for change, and lives filled with missed opportunities and squandered productivity.

As the Bennetts explain in the book, most people seek a therapist in an effort to actively deny that they don't have any control over their emotions. Stuck in a neurotic, fruitless loop, people begin to wonder why they can't achieve perpetual happiness or erase their proclivity to procrastinate. If they could just fix the things they see as broken, they could then become the people they've always wanted to be and finally begin their lives.

But just how much control do you really have over your feelings or your essential nature? According to the Bennetts, much less than you would like to believe. Your efforts are better spent elsewhere.

In this episode, listen as Michael and Sarah explain what you should be doing instead, and why they say - "Fuck feelings."

After the interview, I discuss a news story about how people can be fooled into believing a meal is delicious when told a master chef cooked the meal.

In every episode, after I read a bit of self delusion news, I taste a cookie baked from a recipe sent in by a listener/reader. That listener/reader wins a signed copy of my new book, “You Are Now Less Dumb,” and I post the recipe on the YANSS Pinterest page. This episode’s winner is Tiffany R Carrell who submitted a recipe for buttermilk cookies. Send your own recipes to david {at} youarenotsosmart.com.
Sep 23 2015
1 hour 5 mins
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Rank #10: 100 - The Replication Crisis

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"Science is wrong about everything, but you can trust it more than anything."

That's the assertion of psychologist Brian Nosek, director of the Center for Open Science, who is working to correct what he sees as the temporarily wayward path of psychology.

Currently, psychology is facing what some are calling a replication crisis. Much of the most headline-producing research in the last 20 years isn't standing up to attempts to reproduce its findings. Nosek wants to clean up the processes that have lead to this situation, and in this episode, you'll learn how.

- Show notes at: www.youarenotsosmart.com
- Become a patron at: www.patreon.com/youarenotsosmart

SPONSORS

• The Great Courses: www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/smart
• Squarespace: www.squarespace.com | Offer Code = sosmart
Apr 20 2017
49 mins
Play

Rank #11: 052 - Learned Helplessness

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Stuck in a bad situation, even when the prison doors are left wide open, we sometimes refuse to attempt escape. Why is that? In this episode learn all about the strange phenomenon of learned helplessness and how it keeps people in bad jobs, poor health, terrible relationships, and awful circumstances despite how easy it might be to escape any one of those scenarios with just one more effort. In the episode, you'll learn how to defeat this psychological trap with advice from psychologists Jennifer Welbourne, who studies attributional styles in the workplace, and Kym Bennett who studies the effects of pessimism on health.
Jun 23 2015
45 mins
Play

Rank #12: 037 - Motivation - Daniel Pink

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What motivates you to keep going, to reach for your dreams, to persist and endure? Psychology has, over the last 40 years, learned a great deal about human motivation and drive. In this episode we ask Daniel Pink, author of Drive, how we can better put that knowledge to use in our lives, and in our workplaces and institutions.
Nov 23 2014
1 hour 14 mins
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Rank #13: 158 - The AB Effect

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So, you might think that, in general, as an idea, as a practice, the A/B test would be beloved, supported, and encouraged as a way to test out policies and practices and drugs and treatments, but new research shows that a significant portion of the public does not feel this way, enough to cause doctors and lawmakers and educators to avoid A/B testing altogether.

-- Show Notes at: youarenotsosmart.com --

-- Become a patron at: www.patreon.com/youarenotsosmart --

SPONSORS

• The Great Courses Plus: www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/smart
• Squarespace: www.squarespace.com/sosmart -- offer code: SOSMART
Jul 15 2019
1 hour 22 mins
Play

Rank #14: 128 - Happy Brain

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What makes you happy? As in, what generates happiness inside the squishy bits that reside inside your skull? That's what author and neuroscientist Dean Burnett set out to answer in his new book, Happy Brain, which explores both the environmental and situational factors that lead to and away from happiness, and the neurological underpinnings of joy, bliss, comfort, love, and connection. In the episode you'll hear all that and more as we talk about what we know so far about the biological nature of happiness itself.
May 21 2018
1 hour 28 mins
Play

Rank #15: 110 - Sleep Deprivation and Bias

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If you could compare the person you were before you became sleep deprived to the person after, you’d find you’ve definitely become...lesser than.

When it comes to sleep deprivation, you can’t trust yourself to know just how much it is affecting you. You feel fine, maybe a bit drowsy, but your body is stressed in ways that diminish your health and slow your mind.

In this episode, we sit down with two researchers whose latest work suggests sleep deprivation also affects how you see other people. In tests of implicit bias, negative associations with certain religious and cultural categories emerged after people started falling behind on rest.

- Show notes at: www.youarenotsosmart.com
- Become a patron at: www.patreon.com/youarenotsosmart

SPONSORS

• The Great Courses: Free month at www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/smart
• Squarespace: 10 percent off with the code SOSMART
Sep 10 2017
32 mins
Play

Rank #16: 060 - Reframing - Robert R. Morris

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Reframing is one of those psychological tools that just plain works. It’s practical, simple, and with practice and repetition it often leads to real change in people with a variety of thinking problems.

It works because we rarely question our own interpretations, the meanings we construct when examining a set of facts, or our own introspections of internal emotional states. So much of the things the anxiety and fear we feel when anticipating the future is just the result of plucking from a grab bag of best guesses and assumptions, shaky models of reality that may or may not be accurate and will likely pan out much differently than we predict.

In this episode, we meet Tom Bunn, a former commercial pilot who uses reframing to cure people of their fears of flying and Robert Morris, a startup CEO who is developing a social network to crowdsource mental health in which users reframe others people's fears and anxious thoughts and in the process learn to reframe their own fruitless cognitive loops in their daily lives.

After the interview, I discuss a news story about how humanizing slot machines can encourage people to empty their pockets at casinos.

In every episode, after I read a bit of self delusion news, I taste a cookie baked from a recipe sent in by a listener/reader. That listener/reader wins a signed copy of my new book, “You Are Now Less Dumb,” and I post the recipe on the YANSS Pinterest page. This episode’s winner is Marion Low who submitted a recipe for Hertzoggies. Send your own recipes to david {at} youarenotsosmart.com.
Oct 07 2015
1 hour 10 mins
Play

Rank #17: 133 - Uncivil Agreement

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In this episode, we welcome Lilliana Mason on the program to discuss her new book, Uncivil Agreement, which focuses on the idea: “Our conflicts are over who we think we are, rather than reasoned differences of opinion.”

Personally, I feel like this is just about the most important thing the social sciences are studying right now, and I think Mason is one of the its most brilliant scientists - I promise, the insights you are about to hear will change the way you think about politics, tweeting, elections, and arguing with people on the other side of just about everything.
Jul 30 2018
1 hour 20 mins
Play

Rank #18: 157 - Pluralistic Ignorance

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There are several ways to define pluralistic ignorance, and that’s because it’s kind of a brain twister when you try to put it into words. On certain issues, the majority of the people believe that the majority of the people in a group believe what, in truth, the minority of the members believe. Or put another way, it is the erroneous belief that the majority is acting in a way that matches its internal philosophies, and that you are one of a small number of people who feel differently, when in reality the majority agrees with you on the inside but is afraid to admit it outright or imply such through its behavior. Everyone in a group, at the same time, gets stuck following a norm that no one wants to follow, because everyone is carrying a shared, false belief about everyone else’s unshared true beliefs.

-- Show Notes at: youarenotsosmart.com --

-- Become a patron at: www.patreon.com/youarenotsosmart --

SPONSORS

• The Great Courses Plus: www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/smart
Jul 01 2019
1 hour 28 mins
Play

Rank #19: 049 - Rejection - Jia Jiang

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What if you could give yourself a superpower? That's what Jia Jiang wondered when he began a quest to remove the fear of rejection from his brain and become the risk-taking, adventurous person he always wanted to be. Hear how he forced himself to feel the pain of rejection 100 times in 100 days in an effort to desensitize himself, and how he recorded every moment on his way to making himself a better person.
May 08 2015
54 mins
Play

Rank #20: 067 - The Fallacy Fallacy

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If you have ever been in an argument, you've likely committed a logical fallacy, and if you know how logical fallacies work, you've likely committed the fallacy fallacy.

Listen as three experts in logic and arguing explain just what a formal argument really is, and how to spot, avoid, and defend against the one logical fallacy that is most likely to turn you into an internet blowhard.

• Show Notes: http://bit.ly/1nfOgcu

• Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/youarenotsosmart

• Donate Directly through PayPal: https://www.paypal.me/DavidMcRaney

SPONSORS
• Trunk Club: http://bit.ly/1Sp2wZj
• The Great Courses Plus: http://bit.ly/26kDXpU
• Casper Mattresses: https://casper.com/sosmart
Jan 14 2016
41 mins
Play

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