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We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

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Why We Apologize

April 7, 2013, 10:30 AM

What's the Latest Development?

New research indicates that we get an ego boost when we refuse to apologize for something we've been criticized for. Tyler Okimoto, a senior lecturer in business at the University of Queensland, noted that while people do tend to feel better after apologizing, they feel even better when they decline to say "sorry" after being asked to do so. "No one likes to apologize. More than that, the study showed that not apologizing makes people feel better about themselves; you feel more empowered and more self-satisfied when you refuse to admit that you're wrong."

What's the Big Idea?

While apologizing may not always make us feel rosy and sure of ourselveswe are, after all, admitting our fallibility—there are substantial societal benefits achieved through apology which help explain the behavior: "It strengthens community and reduces interpersonal violence. [Researchers] conclude that people who have a low sense of self-worth have trouble apologizing in the service of these greater goods. Or, as [they] says, it's strong people, not weak people, who can apologize." The ability to apologize is one that must be cultivated in children through kind, but firm, parents. 

Read it at The Atlantic

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com


Why We Apologize

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