Why Smart People Can Be So Foolish

Sternberg, RJ. (Sept 2004). Why smart people can be so foolish. European Psychologist. 9(3): 145-150.

Not only stupid people act foolishly: Smart people can act foolishly by virtue of their thinking they are too smart to do so. Such people tend to act foolishly through the commission of one or more of five cognitive fallacies: (1) unrealistic optimism, whereby they believe that they are so smart that they can do whatever they want and not worry about it; (2) egocentrism, whereby they focus on themselves and what benefits them while discounting or even totally ignoring their responsibilities to others; (3) omniscience, whereby they believe they know everything, instead of knowing what they do not know, (4) omnipotence, whereby they believe they can do whatever they want because they are all-powerful, and (5) invulnerability, whereby they believe that they will get away with whatever they do, no matter how inappropriate or irresponsible it may be. The antidote to foolishness is wisdom. The balance theory of wisdom proposes that people are wise to the extent they apply their intelligence, creativity, and wisdom toward a common good by balancing their own interests, the interests of others, and the interests of organizations or other supra-individual entities; over the long and short terms; through the infusion of values; to adapt to, shape, and select environments.


(Something interesting I found)Posted:Jan 01 2004, 12:00 AM by admin
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