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Feb 13, 2008

"I have been through some terrible things in my life, some of which actually happened." --Mark Twain

10 Ways We Get the Odds Wrong

These days, it seems like everything is risky, and worry itself is bad for your health. The more we learn, the less we seem to know -- and if anything makes us anxious, it's uncertainty. At the same time, we're living longer, healthier lives. So why does it feel like even the lettuce is out to get us? The human brain is exquisitely adapted to respond to risk -- faced with a precipice or a predator, the brain is biased to make certain decisions, reflecting the choices that kept our ancestors alive. But we have yet to evolve similarly effective responses to statistics, media coverage, and other modern uncertainties, and so we don't have cognitive shortcuts to deal with them. Psychology Today uncovers 10 ways we get the odds wrong, and how to think straight about dangers and risk.

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