Summary of The Optimism Bias

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The Optimism Bias summary
Wearing rose-tinted glasses might be the prescription for a happy, successful life.


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In spite of life’s setbacks, most people remain hopeful. This is due in part to the “optimism bias,” a cognitive trait 80% of the population shares. In a TED Talk that informs as it entertains, neuroscientist Tali Sharot explores this trait and whether it’s self-delusional or self-fulfilling – or both. She concludes that awareness of the bias won’t dampen your optimism, so getAbstract recommends her lecture to positive thinkers and realists alike.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How the “optimism bias” influences people’s thinking and behavior,
  • Why it is a healthy cognitive trait, and
  • How researchers discovered the location of the bias in the brain.


If you’re like 80% of the population, you are afflicted with the
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About the Speaker

Tali Sharot wrote The Optimism Bias. She is a neuroscientist and a professor at University College London.

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