Ep 154 Judgement, Bias and Self-Awareness
Today I am discussing some ideas around judgement, bias, and self awareness. Join me in an even tempered discussion about how we are all bias because we are human – and that doesn’t mean we are all terrible people. When we can increase self-awareness around our thinking, we are able to decide if we want to make changes in order to gain new results in our life. Listen today to learn more about what I mean.
In This Episode:
- Unconscious bias
- Cognitive Bias
- Bias at work
- Increasing Self-Awareness to increase Emotional Intelligence
You are listening to the it’s your time podcast and I’m your host certified life coach Michelle Arnold Burke and today’s episode I’m discussing judgment, bias and self awareness. Welcome to the it’s your time podcast, the podcast where busy professionals like you get the practical solutions and support you need to gain control of your schedule. So you can strive to be the best in your career, but without the stress and overwhelm. If you’re looking to increase your energy and decrease your stress, you are in the right place. Hello, hello. Hello, welcome back to the podcast friends. How are you doing today? I have to tell you, I’m feeling pretty fired up about this episode. It has been a topic of conversation this past week. And I think it’s great to share it here with you. So let’s dive in. Now, before we go too far, this episode is called judgment, bias and self awareness. And I would like to start by saying, I think you all know, I am not one of those coaches, that acts like some sort of all knowing expert here to tell you how you have to do your life. Now, that is for sure. Not me at all. I’m here to help build awareness for you to see where maybe you want to make a change. And maybe I can offer some tips that help you on how to get that done. And a lot of times, I like to use real world examples with you from either myself, or clients or co workers because I really do think that it helps to make sense of some of the concepts, when we are able to tell them in a story so that perhaps you can find how it resonates within your life, right. And of course, I always like to add a little laughter. And that’s a bonus in my mind, right? But everyone is different, my friends, and what works for some doesn’t work for others. And I get it. So to be clear, this episode might touch on some things for you. And like all of the things I offer up, take what works and leave what doesn’t. And let’s have some fun along the way. Okay. So to begin, let’s just even the field and say, we all have judgment, we all have bias. And we all have different levels of self awareness, some more than others, right? And I’m going to start with judgment. Now, what comes up when I say we all have judgment, and we all have bias, because sometimes people like to believe they are not judgmental or bias at all. I think that’s when it’s called unconscious bias, right? And maybe even get a little offended. But I don’t think saying that we’re judgmental or bias is a quote unquote, bad thing. I think it helps increase our self awareness. And here’s what I mean, when you look up the word judgment, it is an opinion or decision that is based on careful thought. And I think we take that even a layer deeper. And we include bias. So judgment is an opinion or decision based on careful thought, perhaps. And I might question just how careful the thought is right with some folks before they make judgments. And based on bias. Now, let me ask you this. When I say bias, what comes up? And I know for a lot of folks, it might be a cringe or the word I was recently on a conference call. And one of my women’s leadership development courses where we discuss bias, and some people were kind of taken aback by that, right. So I think for some people, it’s a feeling like in your gut that that’s not you. But I want to let you know, we all have some bias. We are all human. Welcome, right? And I’m going to go into this more, so stick with me. The reason I want to share this with you is because I think we can all increase our emotional intelligence when we gain self awareness. And one area to gain self awareness right is where we see bias come up. And as I mentioned earlier, I don’t think all bias is this negative. I’m a bad person kind of bias. But I do think that we should all know for our own sake, where it might show up, and how it might affect the results that you have in your life. And maybe to help make some better or more informed decisions and your life and at the end of the day. The reason I’m here talking to you is because I want to help you feel the best you can and your every day life right and I’m going to give some examples throughout the park. gasps but one area, I’m pretty confident that you all have some judgments around in your brain is about your self, how you talk to yourself based on all that chatter, and so many of the women that I coach, and I’m guessing you as well, myself included, can be quite judgmental about what we say to ourselves. And that, my friend, can be an entirely different podcast on its own right. But I do just want to make aware if you take nothing out of this, right, pay attention to the chatter that you have about yourself. Because at the end of the day, quite honestly, the most important words you will ever hear are the ones that you say to yourself. Don’t forget that my friend. Okay, now back to more of today’s topic, let’s go ahead and look at the definition of bias that says cause to feel or show inclination or prejudice for or against someone or something. And I honestly can think of too, right off the top of my head for me. I am clearly peloton bias, right? So if there is a house fire, and there are say two folks in that house and I have to choose, I am likely helping the one who’s trying to get their peloton out, right? And I am also dog bias over cat bias 100% and I will totally own that right. I will even tell you. Sometimes this bias seems so innocent. But I was recently talking to another manager about candidate that we were interviewing, and I said I think she would be a great candidate because she’s into the mindset work. To which the response was, you know, you’re being bias there, right? And honestly, I seriously had no idea in the moment, but I for sure can see it now. So listen, this podcast is biased towards women over males, right. And don’t get me wrong. I love to help all the folks. But my stories are clearly geared towards women. Because I am one in the workplace. I have some bias over conversations around how women without kids are sometimes expected to do late cases, for example. So there are so many different kinds of biases. This podcast is not some cultural movement that I’m trying to make it is honestly just in your every day life, the simple ins and outs, where might you be come more self aware as to how bias might influence the results that you currently have in your life right? Now, I think Listen, being a peloton bias for example, builds community, they don’t exclude anybody. In fact, you can even get a free trial if you wanted. And I don’t think being a dog bias is a bad thing. It just means I rescue the pups and someone else who takes care of the bias of cats takes care of them, right. So really, let’s just make this a nice neutral conversation. Because I do think sometimes these conversations can get so heated. And they really lead to nothing except disagreements, arguments, and negative feelings. And I like to promote learning, being open to other ideas and then deciding. And I know, a lot of people like to talk about the big biases that we immediately think of right race, gender, maybe age, maybe I’m biased towards those conversations. But you know, there are a ton more to be aware of, and you can look them up. But to name a few. We have confirmation bias in group bias, self serving bias, hindsight bias, anchoring bias seriously, you can find just about any kind of bias these days, and I am going to for fun, include in the notes, a picture of different biases that I found, be sure to check it out, your mind might be blown. I know mine was when it was first given to me. So today I want to kind of dig a little bit more into cognitive bias because I think it’s a good one to use some examples with. So cognitive bias occurs when people are processing and interpreting information right, and the work around them and affects the decisions and judgments they make. It’s really just our brains attempt to simplify information processing and remember, we’ve talked about the motivational triad where the brain avoids pain seeks pleasure, and is as efficient as possible. So bias is really the attempt to be efficient. Now cognitive bias is typically when people tend to favor information that reinforces the things they already think or believe in So you just pay attention to information that confirms what you already believe. And I’m going to use what is likely one of the biggest topics these days, right? Where examples of cognitive bias can be blatantly seen around the vaccine. And well these days, meaning if you’re listening at the time of the release in October 21, and I’m not dropping any breaking news here, right? People have all different opinions about the vaccine. And I can see this clear as day with the loved ones, and I was recently having a conversation with someone who was so frustrated about her family member not getting the vaccine, and talking about how the other family member so the whatnot getting the vaccine, right, just had no clue how dumb The decision is not to have the vaccine, and how she couldn’t believe that that family member was so set in the decision that was made, and how she, the person who was clearly so frustrated and upset about the situation had all of the facts and not that other person. And I have to tell you, I started dying, laughing, because that was like, you know why you’re so frustrated? Because you are just like your family member. So here’s the thing, you guys, everyone take a step back. And let’s look at this example. This person thinks they’re right, the other person thinks they’re right, right? You think they have put the stakes in the ground, and you have also put the stakes in the ground, they get their quote unquote, facts from sources they want, right? Because cognitive bias is where we find the information that proves our belief to be true, then you get all of your quote unquote, facts from the sources that you want, in addition to having them each have their own bias, there’s also a thing called projection. And I know I’ve talked about this in the past, I think I’ve also mentioned it in relation to Martha’s Beck, you spot it, you got it, right. But it’s basically, when you see others traits that either you admire, or that bother you. Ask yourself, how am I this way, also. So it can go both ways. If something is super frustrating to you about another person, kind of get clearer and more self aware? Where does that show up perhaps in your life? And then when you look at someone else, and maybe you think, oh, they are so confident, that is already within you, you just have to find it. And listen, y’all, I’m going to take a pause here, a little bit of a detour. And I’m just going to mention something because from the definition, we know, cognitive bias has us finding evidence to prove our beliefs true. Correct. And our brain hates to be wrong. And when you are talking about, quote, unquote, facts. And the reason I keep saying this is because it’s up for debate, right? Be sure you know your sources. This is just in general in life, and I don’t care what you’re talking about. Life is sales and sales is life. Think about how you try to sell your kids on eating vegetables, right, and I used to sell TV airtime. Everyone says they’re number one, dig down. Maybe they’re number one, and women to 2554. Or maybe they’re number one, and men 60. Plus, we sold advertising time based on ratings. Ratings don’t spike friends, when they’re Pollyanna stories, you get me right. I’ve also sold pharmaceuticals. And most of the studies are sponsored by companies. So just do your homework. And understanding where the cognitive bias comes into play. It’s just helpful for you to be open to all ideas. And I’m not here to say one is better than the other. But when you get frustrated, that affects you, you feel that not the other person. The judgments are made about the other person based on the cognitive bias that you hold. And sometimes it’s just knowing it’s the bias, that alone might help chill you out a little bit right, and I’m hoping some of what I share with you on any of the podcasts In fact, write helps to decrease your stress and overwhelm. But you got to do the work for you. Let me share one more example of where you can be aware of cognitive bias let’s say at work. Let’s say you get a new boss or a new doctor in your territory, pay attention. Do you go to others ahead of time to see what they think about that person? And if you do, have you noticed, if you’re told ahead of time that they’re great, you typically find all of the great things about them. But if you’re told they’re nasty and a micromanager then you go into the meeting with that in your brain and likely that is what you will find. That is the bias again, the brain does not like to be wrong. It would rather be correct and give you results that you’re not looking for and make you feel frustrated, angry and overwhelmed versus be wrong about something like even to the point of beliefs that maybe you held for years and years and years about yourself. Sometimes I see this with weight loss clients, right? They hold on to the belief of I can never lose the weight. And so they find all of the evidence as to why they can never lose the weight. And what result Do you think that gives them? That’s why change can be such a challenge, it can be so challenging to do new things. Because if we’ve thought a belief to be true for so long, now we are questioning that. And it doesn’t have to be a problem. But we do need to know, it’s how the brain works. And now what, what are we going to do about it? You know what the best news ever is, you always get to choose and that is the beauty of life. Well, let’s say one of the many beauties in life, right? I do after all, kind of have an optimistic bias, you know, okay, friends, that’s what I have for you today. I really just want this to open up some conversation to build our own self awareness for what we are bringing to the world every single day. Let’s do more of that. Okay. So we’ll circle back next week, but for now stay safe and make it a great day. Take care. Did you know you can take this work to a deeper level with me one on one, go to Michelle Bourque coaching comm and click on Get started to begin