Watch This Video, Quit Your Job, Dump Your Boyfriend

The sunk cost fallacy means making a choice based on a desire not to see your past investment go to waste.

We view ourselves as rational decision-makers, and that's our first mistake. Our second mistake is that after making a mistake we continue on the same path because we refuse to accept that we were wrong, not to mention all of the time and energy we have put into a relationship, a job, or a career choice.


In the video below, Julia Galef, president of the Center For Applied Rationality, explains why you might stick it out at a job even though you know you would probably be happier somewhere else. "You figure I’ll just stick with it because I don’t want my past ten years of effort and time and money to have been wasted," Galef says.

So what to do about it?

Awareness of the sunk cost fallacy is key, and you will start to notice how it works when it comes to decisions about small things. Let's say you're 100 pages into a book and it's a big disappointment. Do you put it down or do you "trudge through the remaining 200-300 pages?" Galef asks. 

Understanding how the sunk fallacy works in that instance might help you to think through more important decisions, such as whether to change your career or drop out of a Ph.D program. 

Watch here:

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

SpaceX catches Falcon Heavy nosecone with net-outfitted boat

It marks another milestone in SpaceX's long-standing effort to make spaceflight cheaper.

Technology & Innovation
  • SpaceX launched Falcon Heavy into space early Tuesday morning.
  • A part of its nosecone – known as a fairing – descended back to Earth using special parachutes.
  • A net-outfitted boat in the Atlantic Ocean successfully caught the reusable fairing, likely saving the company millions of dollars.
Keep reading Show less

Are these 100 people killing the planet?

Controversial map names CEOs of 100 companies producing 71 percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions.

Image: Jordan Engel, reused via Decolonial Media License 0.1
Strange Maps
  • Just 100 companies produce 71 percent of the world's greenhouse gases.
  • This map lists their names and locations, and their CEOs.
  • The climate crisis may be too complex for these 100 people to solve, but naming and shaming them is a good start.
Keep reading Show less

‘Climate apartheid’: Report says the rich could buy out of climate change disaster

The world's richest people could breeze through a climate disaster – for a price.

(Photo by SSPL/Getty Images)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • A new report from a United Nation expert warns that an over-reliance on the private sector to mitigate climate change could cause a "climate apartheid."
  • The report criticizes several countries, including the U.S., for taking "short-sighted steps in the wrong direction."
  • The world's poorest populations are most vulnerable to climate change even though they generally contribute the least to global emissions.
Keep reading Show less