Those famous quotes from Einstein and Gandhi?  'They never said' |  a job

Those famous quotes from Einstein and Gandhi? ‘They never said’ | a job

verticalBehavioral psychologist Chantal van der Liss examines our behavior in the workplace: Who or what determines our daily decisions? Today: ease of perception




For years, I’ve had the quote “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough” by Albert Einstein, hanging above my workplace. Until I heard the best man had never said this. Since then, I’ve been intrigued by these fake statements, which is a good thing, because the internet is full of quotes that were never said. I too was guilty of posting it. I was recently reminded by savvy readers that Pippi Longstocking’s famous quote – “I’ve never done that, so I guess I can” – What I wrote aboutShe never said it again.

Why are there so many wrong quotes? First of all, they often look better: “I’m Tarzan, you’re Jane”, “Beam me, Scotty” from run it back, Sam It is never said literally in the movie, but they understand its gist very well. People often talk very loudly in real life. Spiritual leader Gandhi once told a very long story of change. yawning. Another person translates this to: “Be the change you want to see in the world.” See, this is manageable.

This is called cognitive ease, if something seems easy and fits what we already thought we find it more persuasive and easier to remember. If you want to create a resounding quote, keep it simple.

catcher with a familiar name

Also add the name of a salad, which makes the quote more attractive. In America, famous writer and humorist Mark Twain’s name stuck under every joke, such as “Whenever I feel the need to exercise, I lie down until it’s gone” or “Wagner’s music is better than it sounds.” Not a tween, but hey, he could have said that.

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Is it bad if the quotes are wrong? In any case. For example, the phrase “Let them eat a cake (brioche)” is associated with Marie Antoinette, Queen of France. She is said to have said this during the famine of 1789, when her people ran out of bread. In fact, the philosopher Rousseau wrote this statement ten years before her birth, and yet the quote remained with her forever. In short, it’s always a good idea to check information before you post it.

Would you like to learn more about psychology and work? Read Chantal’s books Why Perfectionists Are Rarely Happy, 13 Tips Against Perfection (2021) and Our Mistaken At Work (2018).


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