People often think with their gut. That’s not ideal for a pandemic.
When people make decisions, psychologists have found, two main systems influence their thinking and decision-making: gut feelings and logical analysis.One is more immediate and based on intuition. The other is slower, more thoughtful and based on evidence.”The fast-thinking and gut feelings usually dominate,” said Paul Slovic, a professor of psychology at the University of Oregon and author of several books on risk perception and behavioral sciences. “This is because it’s natural and easy, and most of the time we trust our intuitions to give us good guidance in our daily lives.”Human intuition, however, is not particularly well geared to a pandemic.Around the world, the coronavirus has forced schools to close, economies to stall and countries to lock down their borders. It has also solicited a wide range of reactions from people, many of which psychologists say show just how difficult it can be for the human mind to comprehend risk.That mental disconnect can be explained by how humans react to fear and their perception of risk — and the biases that color both. The concept of risk is difficult for the human mind to grasp because it’s typically based on perceived threats rather than any quantifiable measure of the threat