Let’s pretend, hypothetically, that you’ve acted like a supreme jerk with someone who knows you well. Quite rightly, your spouse, significant other or friend isn’t having any of it and calls you out. Whereupon, after a little reflection, you realize the error of your ways and apologize unreservedly.
Then, on the cusp of receiving absolution, your friend or lover dredges up a long forgotten infraction from the pre-disco era and revisits it detail-by-detail. What the heck just happened? This common experience has deep roots in the origins of modern psychology beginning with the “father of modern psychology” himself…
William James is most famous for a wildly counterintuitive hypothesis that turned out to be wrong. (Demonstrating that—regardless if you’re a psychologist, economist, or even a motivational speaker—if you want to be considered a thought leader, it’s more important to be counterintuitive than to be right.) Continue reading