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Sam Brinson Posts

Metacognition and Self-Directed Learning

Metacognition is often described as ‘thinking about thinking.’ It’s about monitoring and controlling your mental processes. When you’re learning something, if you ask yourself questions like “how well do I understand this?” or “will I remember this?” you are engaging in metacognition. “It is an inherent property of intelligence that it can jump out of…

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Happiness is a Product of Effort

Happiness is a result of effort, but effort that’s directed towards meaningful goals, not necessarily the goal of being happy. Daniel Kahneman makes a distinction between two selves: the experiencing self and the remembering self. The experiencing self lives only in the present, and will be happy when you indulge in pleasures like a cold beer on…

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How to Write

“If people cannot write well, they cannot think well, and if they cannot think well, others will do their thinking for them.” —George Orwell It’s easy to have an opinion without fully understanding why we have it. We experience things and they imprint a certain feeling within us, a feeling we can express with a few…

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Something Smells Fishy

It’s more than a metaphor. The subtle scent of rotting fish raises suspicion. We don’t only become suspicious of the fishy smell itself, but to whatever task that happens to be occupying our attention. Researchers Norbert Schwarz and Spike Lee (not that Spike Lee) write in their paper:  “… exposure to fishy smells is sufficient…

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