Ep11 – Modern ninja knows that image is everything


In addition to last episode: my headache transformed itself into full blown… Common cold. Today’s post then will be containing an abstract of idea for the paper I’m completing for political psychology class. But, huh huh, don’t lose me just yet. Why you ask? Simple: Cause I’m going to equip you with a tool to amaze your co-workers on lunch breaks at the social room of the office. Let’s get it equipped then!

As a modern ninja what you should know about the people that would suggest with reasonable ground to defend that the title is actually true? As we know now our minds use simplified methods of intuitive problem solving called heuristics. It is domain of our “fast thinking process” – intuitive, unconscious, hence uncontrollable, based on associative memory. This kind of thinking system is very useful when it comes to quick assessments. Especially those quicker than blink of an eye.

There is also the second system – “slow thinking process”. It is conscious, controllable, and orderly. We associate it with making mental effort, thinking rationally in opposition to basing our judgments on emotions, it subjectively “feels” as it itself is our free will, our sense of conscious self. It is more of our math skills than recognizing emotions conveyed through facial expressions.

All above being said, the first, automatic system affects our conscious effort and hence the results made by second process. Next thing you need to know is that first system is “always on” and it tries its best to provide us with answers and interpretations of our surroundings. Of course there are questions and problems that go beyond its limitations, beyond ones intuitive capabilities. Then the bad thing happens – if intuitive thinking cannot solve a problem it changes the questions to an easier one, so it could provide you with “some” result.

Example: Tom is thinking about investing his spare money in automotive biz. He goes to the expo in Detroit to make himself comfortable with the industry’s novelties. He looks at the Ford station (or whatever) and thinks to himself: “Yeah, those are best of them all here. Also much better than past Fords. The company goes in right direction”. After the flight back (I don’t know why Tom is not from Detroit…) he buys Ford shares. As you can probably see there is a problem with Toms thinking. One don’t buy shares of company which makes good cars, he should buy shares of the company which is undervalued. His brain changed the question from “what shares I should buy?” to “whose cars I like the most?” and provide him a clear answer. Such judgment based solely on emotional impact, in this case, sympathy or antipathy towards something or someone, is derived from what we call affect heuristic.

This is why modern ninja knows that image is everything. Because “it” – the modern ninja – wants to have the best chance of success when common and powerful affect heuristic kicks in “its” clients, boss, mates or whomever minds. When the rational question will be swapped for affective one modern ninja wants to come on top. When success and failure is coded in binary terms, modern ninja will cut the most edge towards the binary 1. Image, how you appear in minds and intuitions of others, is the biggest edge of them all.

Take care and if you have a positive or negative response feel encouraged to express it in the comments section.
– Przemek Kucia

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